The thought of them intimidate me but the beauty that follows the initial needle prick is fascinating.
I have one tattoo. It's simple and signifies something of great love and beauty.
I first decided on this tattoo in high school but never actually went through with it until my Junior year of college.
My tattoo? My nickname. Katrina
Now, you may be thinking, 'who gets their nickname tattooed on themselves?'
My nickname was given to me by my grandparents. I was rarely called Katie by them, it was always Katrina. Close friends and family still call me Katrina and I love it.
Growing up, I hated to be called Katrina. It wasn't my name. My name was Katie.
Now, I would kill to hear my grandparents call me Katrina again.
My grandpa passed away rather quickly when I was in eighth grader, right before Thanksgiving.
My grandma lost her year-long battle with lung cancer at the end of my Sophomore year of high school.
I miss more than words can say.
They were my rock, my constant, and they loved my brother and I unconditionally. The last months of my grandma's life, I spent every moment I could with her. I brought her ice cream and malts after school, did her grocery shopping (and I got to drive her Cadillac), we sat and played cards for hours. I still hope to be half the woman that she was.
This tattoo is simple, yet beautiful. It's my nickname, my identity. Most importantly, it's in her handwriting.
The nickname my grandfather created, written in my grandmothers beautiful handwriting.
It's simply perfect.
I couldn't decide, foot or wrist. I wanted it to be somewhere I could see it, a constant reminder of what they meant to me. What their love still means to me.
I finally decided to go through with the tattoo when I heard my cousin Kim and her daughter were coming to town from the west coast. It had been years since I had seen them last and having family with me, standing next to me during this experience, was important.
Along with my family from the west coast, my best friend was also by my side, but she was filming the entire experience in case I started to cry from the pain. True friendship right there!!!! (I am definitely glad she filmed it all!)
It has been just over a year since I got the tattoo and I don't regret it one bit. It is a constant reminder as to how much love and support my grandparents gave me and how much they meant and will continue to impact my life.
My name may be Katie, but Katrina is who I will always be.
Richard and Elaine Kingston, thank you for making me the person I am today and influencing the person I will become.
Just me. That's all.