What My New Tattoo Means

By Sarah Aterrado - July 02, 2024

While my first tattoo (a compass) was significant to me because I love to travel, I told myself that if ever I will get another one, it has to be drawn and designed by me. You see, I am an illustrator and a graphic designer. I designed all our business logos and promotional materials, our wedding invitation, my children's birthday posters—anything I deem personal. A tattoo should not be any different.

I had my first tattoo in 2016 and since then, I've discovered new hobbies and interests, pursued my passions, survived trials, and celebrated milestones in my life. Of course, these were enough to warrant a permanent mark on my skin but then, I would have been covered in ink by now. In 2022, after I gave birth to our third child, I had envisioned a tattoo in my mind—it covers every significant thing about my life. But it was only this year when I finally had the time to draw. 

I decided to have my tattoo done at InkGie Tattoo since they have a medical doctor and a paramedical tattooist. This ensures that the studio is clean and everything they use is sterile and medical-grade. No doubt, I will be in good hands. 

Miss Gel, my tattooist who is also a registered nurse, did a great job. I enjoyed the entire tattoo session because it was almost painless. I must have a high tolerance for pain, or she has exceptionally light and steady hands—or perhaps it’s a bit of both.

I highly recommend InkGie not only for their artistry and professionalism, but every staff is friendly and accommodating as well.

What my tattoo means

πŸ” The lock represents my heart, which can only be opened by four keys that represent my husband (key on the left) and our three (3) children.

πŸ—“️ I requested to replace the names on the keys, as shown in the original design, with their birthdates instead, as these are the dates that I was truly blessed. Yep, including Jan's birthday. I believe I was already blessed with his existence even before I was born. The blessing just manifested 28 years later.

πŸ’Ž The gemstones on each key are my children's birthstones, while on the husband's key is a heart. 

🌷The flowers on the lock are lilies. In the original design, these are red lilies that symbolize love and passion. But I gave the artist the freedom to choose another color because the red lily isn't standing out against the red heart. She made it better with gold. And now, I like to think of them as yellow lilies that symbolize gratitude and happiness.

πŸŽ—️The ribbon that connects the lock and keys forms the letter A, the first letter of our family name; SJ, which are my initials; and an infinity sign. It is blue because it's my favorite color.

I know everything you see is corny but I've thought of each part well and I took my time to draw it carefully. I am so happy how it turned out, and I would not want it any other way. 😊😊😊

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