Saturday, September 22, 2012

Summer stories- the tattoo diaries :/

LAST summer my son (kid1) texted me while I was out on a lovely dinner date and said "I got a tattoo" and I replied, "you better be kidding" as I was no longer hungry. The conversation via text was much longer, as you can imagine, than those two texts and I have since wondered why it bothered me so much. Was it the lack of control? Was it that he was growing up? Was it that it's permanent and he's so young…? What if he changes his mind? I'm not like adamantly against tattoo's, Mr. B. has some, but this was my baby boy.

I can tell you that I didn't ask to see it, when I did actually see it, I didn't look closely, I wasn't thrilled to say the least. I never thought much about it, I just knew I didn't like it. Let me give you a few facts about his first tattoo.

1. he got it on a whim
2. he got it in someone's BATHROOM
3. it's a Harry Potter tattoo (enough said)
4. He didn't have a job and was relying on me for money
5. He was living at home and didn't ask my permission

THIS summer, my son (kid1) got several tattoo's and this time I really wanted to look deeply into how I really felt about this. First, I didn't really know what to say, how to feel or how I should react. I just knew that I didn't react well last summer and things are different so I needed to act accordingly.

Here are a few facts about this summers tattoo's

1. He had them drawn out and saved for them
2. He was at a professional and reputable tattoo establishment
3. It WASN'T a Harry Potter tattoo
4. He has a full time job and pays for his own entertainment and bills
5. He doesn't live at home anymore, and doesn't need to ask my permission

These facts made the tattoo's this summer easier on my mind, but there had to be more. Why, why was this easier? After some very serious thought about it, here's what I think: my son is my baby, he'll always be my baby, even when he's all grown. I have spent 20 years (so far) protecting him in a thousand ways. I have put sunscreen on him to protect his skin, he's worn shoes, coats, hats to protect him, he's taken medicine, eaten healthy and worn a seat belt… obviously this is a very short list of things. I have worked so hard to protect him and its strange to let go, to say "okay, your body is yours to do with what you want"…. and hope for the best. Is a tattoo a terrible thing? Not at all! Can it be a shocking thing to a mom? Yes, certainly it can. It's a change, it's a statement, its permanent! Is he still the same good hearted kid who will always be my little boy? Absolutely!

Raising kids is hard, having them grow up and enter the real world is hard. Life isn't always easy, I want to try as hard as I can to step back and not judge my kids decisions. I want to step back and remember to look past their appearances and attitudes and remember their hearts are good and they will always be my babies.


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