What tattoos do you have, and do they have meaning to you?

I currently have one tattoo. It is almost a year old at this point. I dreamed the idea up for a full year before getting it. Many parts of my personality match up with the qualities of a deer, so I knew I wanted to incorporate this majestic animal. I think my happy place would be hidden up in a mossy forest on a hill, walking between trees—and seeing antlers emerge from the misty darkness.

I drew up a few possible designs, but the drawings felt incomplete with just a solitary deer. About a month before my tattoo, I got a new idea. I also wanted a constellation.

When I was younger I was fascinated with constellations and the myths behind them, especially the Greek myths. Besides the Dippers, the only one I could ever spot on my own was Orion. His shining trapezoidal shape hanging above me gave me comfort on any night clear enough to see the stars.

But how to combine them?

Through a telescope lens, of course. But I didn’t want a stark metal circle sitting alone on my shoulder—so I found some lovely flower drawings on Pinterest and combined many together to make a lush ring for my telescope scene.

Right after I finished the drawing, it struck me as ironic that Orion is a fabled hunter, permanently aiming his bow and arrow into the night. That’s not the point of my tattoo. In fact, it’s just the opposite. Orion watches over the deer as a protector, just he does with me.

My tattoo is also a reminder to myself to remember who I am. Last year, I moved 1500 miles away from everyone I knew. I was excited to start over, but I didn’t want to lose the things most important to me, the things that make me me. I didn’t want college to change me into just another blonde girl in a beach town.

I am not like everyone else. I am someone you should remember.

So what’s next for me? I have the itch again…

I want a Harry Potter tattoo. I started reading the books when I was 6 years old and haven’t stopped. I went to book releases and movie premieres. I can quote until everyone is annoyed. So I think next up will be a small Snitch. A lot of HP tattoos are really common, like the Deathly Hallows (but they’re sooo pretty!) or wands. And I definitely don’t want a commonplace tattoo. Only time will tell…

What tattoos do you have?