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August 17, 2008

The story behind the ink

I got my first tattoo on Friday. It is a "Jesus tattoo" and it's on top of my right foot.

Let's talk about tattoos for a minute here. Who would ever get their first tattoo on their foot...a moron that's who. I felt like Cassie (my tattoo girl from Studio 42) was trying to cut through my skin to grind down my foot bone. It's not really an "ow, that really hurts" feeling, but more like a "wow, that's so annoying" kind of feeling. But I'm ready to go get another one now.

Anyway, for some time I was against tattoos and really did not see a point in them or ever want to get one. Then, this lovely show called Miami Ink aired on TLC and became my new addiction. At first I only watched it because it has some good looking men involved, but then I began to really love the show for what it was supposed to bring people...the stories behind the tattoos. So I of course wanted a tattoo. I have some other ideas in mind for other tattoos I may or may not get in the future, but I got this one first for a couple of reasons.

It's a Jesus tattoo. It says "i will stand for You" and the t looks like a cross. And yes I know that i is lowercase. So here's the (short version) of this story.

I wasn't always a Christian and even though I grew up in a house that was, I didn't always believe about all of that "God stuff." I tried being a good little Christian girl and I did the church functions and went to camp and went to everything I could get into that related to God in some way, but half of the time I never really felt it. So I gave up and decided there was no God. Then I went on a mission trip to New Orleans and my world completely changed. That summer I was at a mission type camp thing, called Mission Discovery, which I've been to plenty of times and one of my best friend's, Lindsay, introduced me to a song called I Stand for You and we both thought of getting a tattoo that summer with those lyrics somehow.

But that didn't happen and we both moved on to college. My first year of college was wonderful, but I very much lived it for myself. The amount of new freedom was not only from home, but to me it was from God as well, I did what I wanted. Now don't get the wrong idea, I wasn't jumping off the deep end or anything, but I was rebel. Then I was given the job that I feel I was always supposed to have. I was finally old enough to be a camp counselor at the camp I always went to as a kid and I wanted that job like no other. (Not to mention, the Director of Camping for the Conference was practically waiting for me to be old enough to be a counselor too, just so I could be hired.) When I moved to Jumonville for the summer in May, we had three weeks of hard, intense training, mentally, physically and spiritually. My weakest areas were thrown in my face everyday, like God was trying to get me to fully break. I'm not a crier, so that never happened, but over time through training I saw who I really was and what I needed to change. But then my campers came and week after week I was built up by them and how much they looked up to me. Though having the campers there had its ups and downs, each week got better and better and I realized who I was (and who's I am) more as the summer went on.

So I got the Jesus tattoo because I love Jesus. He's my co-pilot. I'm done with making my decisions without Him. So I will stand for Him, because He already stood up for me. And the I is lowercase because I am under Him. I'm not as important as He is; He comes first, not me. I know it's improper, but sometimes I feel that people make too much of an effort to make that I capital, and take themselves too seriously. This tattoo is mostly there to remind me not to do so. I sent a picture text to Lindsay with my tattoo and she said that my tattoo and I are both beautiful to Jesus...so don't judge, because I believe that too.

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5 Comments

Neat tattoo, Chelsea. I love your explanation of the lower-case "i." Meaning is more important than grammatical correctness!

Chelsea welcome to the ink club. I have 8 myself.

I won't write on your leg with a red pen. If you have a reason for choosing a non-standard expression, that's good enough for me.

Chelsea,

Would you be willing to enter your tattoo story on:

beyondtheink.com

I think your story will be such a great complementary piece to all the others on this new website.

Just a thought!

Jill

Hey Jill, thanks for stopping by and thanks for the idea I will look into it!

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