Discovering tattoos at the age of 17… a time when being tattooed placed me in the minority but would soon become a major fashion trend…
Simply wanting a tattoo because I liked the look of them: why, I did not know, nor did I ever bother to stop and question this need at that time.
Over time, I have observed that tattoos have almost become a common ‘fashion accessory’ – a trend, something everyone ‘must have’. Today, they’ve gained wide-reaching acceptance with a broad spectrum of people now being tattooed: musicians, actors, sportspeople, mothers, fathers and grandparents all are succumbing to the latest fad.
And as they have become so prevalent and socially accepted, no longer are you asked why you have a tattoo but why you do not. Also, they’re bigger than ever now – not just a little star, a butterfly, a unicorn or bluebird anymore – they’re now large enough to cover almost an entire limb or the whole back.
The Addictive Nature of Tattoos
Once tattooed, I found there was a need for another, then another, each one bigger and bolder than the last, as if the tattoos themselves were an addiction. For they had become so for me, in the sense that once I had a taste for them, I couldn’t seem to stop myself from getting more.
Looking back I can see that this addiction to tattoos was very similar to other addictions I used to keep me numbed to feeling what really was going on, and from how I was truly feeling; things such as alcohol, marijuana, shopping or over-working.
What is it that makes tattoos so addictive?
I’m not the only one of course – many have taken tattoos to an extreme. But what is so appealing about tattoos that we do not question them and have allowed them to become so prevalent?
I know that I never stopped to consider why I would do that to my body, even when asked by my parents. Great question, but something I had no answer for at the time. It was only after I had made many other changes in my life that I began to ponder.
Was it possible that tattoos fooled me into believing that I accepted myself? Or did they allow me to focus on something else on my body – rather than on my body itself?
I used to think my tattoos beautified my body; that my body was not beautiful enough without something else. Clothes, shoes and accessories were one thing, but once they were gone, my body remained, raw, uncovered and exposed – a body not accepted, a body always needing ‘to be improved upon’, to fit the unrealistic picture the media constantly presents to us. I see now that I was using tattoos as a way to hide my body and myself, and as a form of protection.
I eventually realised this protection did not work
No matter how many tattoos I had, once the thrill and excitement of my new tattoo wore off, I was left with the same old feeling of worthlessness, a lack of respect for and acceptance of myself.
Attending workshops and presentations with Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine, I began to discover that there was so much more to my tattoos and my life than I was allowing myself to feel. I was able to accept more and more of me as I am, and that I am so much more than my tattoos.
The need to hide behind something or someone was falling away. I realised it was ok for me to just be me, and that the only person that needed to accept me, was me.
It took a little more time to break down the ideals and beliefs I’d ‘picked up’ and held on to around not being enough; to realise that I am not the clothes I wear nor the hairstyle I have – to know that I am what is within – and it is that beauty within that is now able to shine, without the need for any form of fashion accessory or tattoo.
By making choices in my life that are supportive and loving, allowing me to feel who I am without the façade, I have been able to end my addiction to tattoos and see my body and myself for who I truly am, the amazing, delicate woman I have always been and shall continue to blossom to be.
The Next Step: Tattoo Removal
Now I am choosing to go through the procedure of having my tattoos removed in a loving, supportive process with Dr Anne Malatt.
Part of my development has been about reclaiming myself and living the naturally beautiful woman I am. The laser tattoo removal process is just another part of this development, along with other changes I made and am still making in my life.
Each removal session supports me to feel more of me. Now I am able to look at myself in the mirror and see and feel me and the body I am in – not the tattoos I chose to hide behind.
Through the presentations and support of Universal Medicine and Serge Benhayon I have been able to look at all areas of my life, making loving choices that support me and my body. My journey from tattoos to tattoo removal, from addiction to self-acceptance is an extension of that life now lived. I accept and appreciate the body I have, no matter how it may look, and know that I could never become addicted to tattoos again.
By Nicole Serafin, Tintenbar, Australia