Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Inked

There are some things parents expect to navigate with their kids.

There are other things they don't really think much about, these things being unlikely so no need to worry about

There are other things parents dread happening.

I am sure each family has different items for each of these categories.

We drew the line at face piercings with the dire warning that if they defaced their faces (most especially their beautiful and expensive smiles) then they owed us back the $6000 for the orthodontics.

They seemed cool with that.

So when Lindsay announced at 16 that we wanted a tattoo I responded carefully.

I wanted to keep the conversation going.  To understand her reasons and her ideas.

I didn't want to over react nor did I want to under react.

The truth was I didn't really know how I felt.

So we have talked for 2 years.  Looked at many many designs. Talked it over with tattooed friends.  Sought some good advice.

When she turned 18 she no longer needed our consent (although she still needs our driving skills) but she kept us in the loop.

She made a final choice on what she wanted and last night, having had a prior consult with a skilled tattoo artist, she got her tattoo.
Signing consent

Testing spacing

Mock up - Approved!
She was determined and brave and excited and calm and I was proud of her.

I have never been a Mama who can watch her kids get needles so after we saw the mock up on her arm I went for a walk with my friend Emily who has done all this before and is part of Lindsay's village.  We walked and talked, mainly about our daughters and about mothering through these years.

And it was done.  In 40 minutes or so.

She chose a quote from Peter Pan that resonated deeply with her "Would you like an adventure now, or shall we have our tea first?"

It speaks to both her love of adventure and her love of curling up with a cup of tea to chat or read a book.  It's a reminder to herself that both are a gift and both are an opportunity to be enjoyed when she is ready for each.

Done!
And it looks beautiful.

She is very happy.

And so am I .

Not just because she is happy (although what parents heart isn't happy when their kids are happy?) but also that we navigated a sticky issue with communication and graciousness from all.

It wasn't a parenting issue I had particularly considered but not one I dreaded either.  Isn't a relief that one manages to navigate these things when there is love and openess and flexible thinking.

Yay us!

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