Miracles of Nature

There are three types of miracles. Miracles of healing, miracles of resurrection and miracles of nature. For me, miracles of nature are supernatural. Not that I am negating the value of the other types of miracles, but those of nature are more unique for they borrow from the elements of fire, earth, water and wind and resound with our human nature.

Two particular miracles stand out for our Gospel reading at Church tomorrow. Those miracles which are in focus are the feeding of the five thousand and Jesus walking on the water. The underlying message of this is that we need not to fear for God will provide for our physical and spiritual needs.

god provides

The feeding of the five thousand demonstrates God’s providence. Despite everything being pitted against us. God sees us through and gives us more than enough. So just to highlight the challenges in the situation. There were too many people. They were too far away from anyone or any village. They did not have enough money to buy food. It would be reminisce not to include that they were hungry. Now there was a thoughtful mother in the story who packed a lunch for her son. It consisted of five loaves of bread and two fish. Now Jesus possessed more faith than any other human being ever. He prayed to God and blessed the food and gave it out for distribution among the people. Now the people that were counted according to records were 5000 men excluding women and children. It was also recorded that after the people ate their full, they collected 12 baskets full of leftovers. This teaches us not to waste and to preserve our environment for the future generations to come.

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God provides for us in such a way that we have more than enough. We are filled and there is extra that we can share with others. In all of this we must remember to show gratitude for both being filled and also for having the opportunity to share with others. We know what it feels like to have life working against us. God uses what we would deem to be the littlest and insignificant things to work in our lives and bless them. When God blesses it, this insignificant element turns out to work in our favour so much so that we can share it with others. We just have to have faith in God’s providence.

 

Speaking of faith, the second miracle of Jesus walking on the water is a demonstration of faith which needs to be examined biblically and realistically. I once watched a magician trying to prove that walking on water was an illusion. Needless to say, after his experiments he was unsuccessful. Thus proving that this was a supernatural feat with the element of water. Water sustains and supports us in life. We need water for survival. Yet this miracle shows water in a different perspective.

Now Jesus’ disciples were on a boat in the Sea of Tiberias while Jesus was in the mountain praying. The link between these two miracles is that after feeding the five thousand the people wanted to make him king, but Jesus withdrew to a quiet place to reflect. That is essential in our everyday lives. Not only is it important for us to be filled with our basal needs but we also need to be filled with our spiritual needs. We need to get away from the business of life to a quiet place and reflect to get closer to God.

If we don’t reflect on our lives, we get caught up in the hectic nature of it all. Just like the disciples on the Sea of Tiberias. This sea is like our lives. One time it can be calm with just a few ripples of water on the surface. The next moment there are the strong winds, whipping up the waves into a heightened frenzy and we are holding on for our dear lives. The disciples were scared and afraid. They thought that this was their end. Then suddenly they saw a ghost.

what you need

Sometimes the things that scared us could actually save us. Facing our fears can actually work for us in the long run. This ghost that the disciples saw obviously put fear in their hearts at first but upon further examination they realised that it was Jesus doing a supernatural feat of walking on the water. Now Peter, the most courageous of the disciples, wanted to walk on water as well. Jesus told him to step out of the boat.

Peter started off well at first because he kept his eyes on Jesus. And then he made the mistake of looking down and seeing the swirling water beneath his feet. Questions filled his mind. Doubt entered his thoughts and he subsequently began to sink. He cried out to Jesus to save him and Jesus did. He asked Peter not to fear but just believe. Just believe that you can do what others deem impossible because of your past experience. Just believe that your dreams will be fulfilled one day. Just believe in the success to come when all you have encountered was failure. Jesus is there to pull you up when you start to sink under the responsibilities of life. Whether it is your family, your career, your studies, Jesus is there to pull you through by getting you over your fears.

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Ultimately these miracles of nature give us hope through the supernatural. Realistically we can apply this to the challenges of everyday. Do what scares you, as long as it will benefit you in the long run. Do not fear, just believe that God will provide for your physical and spiritual needs. Never forget to acknowledge him in times of reflection and pray. For by doing this you can really appreciate all of the blessings which come your way. So let go of all of the fears and rest assured that God is taking care of you. Walk on water, fully satisfied enough to share with others.

I leave you with my personal mission statement:

I will gain more opportunities for personal and professional development by using the capacity to speak on diverse topics to accomplish less discrimination and more understanding and in doing so, achieve a deeper spiritual connection with others and God. – Anewday.

 

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Name calling

One day an old friend of mine told me: “I have always liked you because you’re strange. I was trying to get your attention when we were teenagers but you would never give me the time of day.”

My eyes raised up quizzically and I asked: “Is strange meant to be a compliment?

He replied: “It’s whatever you make it to be.”

That got me to thinking that I’ve been called names all my life. The name my father gave me is the one that I respond to best of all for it means gift – in Greek. He would even sing me a song he specifically composed for me and the lyrics went like this:

We love our little Laura for she’s a gift from God

We hope that she’ll be happy and healthy, wise and good.

I’ve carried that song with me for my entire life. But I’ve been called other names too: goody-two-shoes, geek, freak, weird, ugly, darkie, picky hair (which means in Barbadian dialect that your hair is short and natural) and the list goes on. Conversely, I’ve been called sweetness, sexy, nena (which means baby girl in Spanish), intellectual, intense, natural beauty and that list goes on too.

I’ve heard some sage advice and it notes that those things which people laugh at you and consider you to be different can actually work out to your benefit. It’s easy to say that in retrospect but when people are calling you b*tch or controlling or over-ambitious. It leaves an impression on your conscience. Or you can take the advice of my friend: It’s whatever you make it to be.

I’ve always wanted to be a food critic. But one that diplomatically tells the experience of food as it is. Some critics go overboard on either how fantastic the service is or how fabulous the food looks. Others go to the other extreme where there is not a place on God’s green earth. Me? I want to be strange. I want to be unique in my approach on food critiques. So I’m going to tell you like it is. Everything will be real. No sensationalism. Just the truth as I see it. And there’s going to be no ratings. I’m going to ask you to try it for yourself, because everyone is different. The food blog will be called “Real Different Tastes”. It will be restaurant reviews and cooking interviews with people who can actually cook. There will also be a segment about helping others who are unfortunate and giving them food to nourish their bodies and souls. This will all be done in a diplomatic format: balancing the subjective views with the objective views.

So I will embark on this new adventure and see where this takes me. Real Different Tastes is going to blog and publish these articles. I’m soooo excited. Name called. Name owned. Strange, unique and natural beauty.

 

Man’s rejection is God’s protection

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There is a couple who appear to be loving and supportive of each other on the outside. What’s more is that this continues on the inside of their relationship. He takes her out to restaurants and concerts. He accompanies her and places his hand on the small of her back when he guides her to their place. She is loyal to him despite some of the things he does sometimes annoys her. She looks at him and thanks God for bringing such a caring and wonderful man in her life: flaws and all. But something is missing. They have been trying to have a child for the longest time but have been unsuccessful. People ask them when will they start to have an addition to the family and this is a painful subject for both of them. The couple look at a young lady across from them in the room.

There is a single mother whose children surround her wherever she goes: to the store, to the mall, to the park, to the church. When she is without them, she is asked of them as if her children are joined to her hip. She gets twice the hugs, the kisses, the love, the frustration and the emotional drain. She loves to see them happy, clothed and fed. In their eyes, she’s a queen for they live to see her happy. She puts them to sleep at night with prayer and they wake her up in the morning with anticipation of the day ahead. But she has no one to share her memories with. There’s a void when she makes them breakfast in the morning, or sees them playing or puts them to sleep. People set her up on dates which bore her and she accepts while doing the household tasks that she is a strong woman who has not found her match as yet. Or did she reject her match already? She looks at the couple across from her in the room.

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Each situation has a thread of rejection. The couple is childless and the single mother is lonely without a companion. Yet simultaneously each situation has a thread of protection. The couple will get to know each other so well as they spend their life together discovering new things about each other. Children are another factor that they may not be ready for. The single mother will see her cubs grow to become young lions and conversely, her children will know what a good parent does because of the example which she portrays every day in their lives. She may also be protecting her children from a volatile situation as we remember stories such as Charles Dicken’s David Copperfield in which remarriage was not the best option for the children involved. Wolves are often disguised in sheep’s clothing. Everything is not as it seems.

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Conversely, it’s okay to feel lack for ironically it develops an appreciation for what one does not have. If life turns out that that couple will eventually have a child, then that child will be loved beyond compare. If life turns out that the super woman of a single mother finds a match who strengthens the bonds of the family then she will cherish the opportunity to share important moments of life with her companion. What matters is how we live our life. We have a choice. We could either spend our life longing for the things which we do not have, trying to unlock the doors which God has shut for our protection. Or we can either spend life being grateful for what we already have, going through the doors of opportunity which God has opened for us for our benefit. Our view is different from that of God’s. We are not able to see the entire picture as yet. But when it all comes together it would make sense.

The couple and the single mother locked eyes with each other across the room and smiled.

 

Live For the Moment

Focus on what matters and everything else will fall into place…

Every year, I challenge myself to do something new so that I can feel stupid. It’s humbling and at the same time I develop another skill which I never knew I had before. I must thank my son for introducing me to a new skill: archery.

When I asked my son why he wanted to do this new hobby, he noted that it would improve his focus in photography and as a result he would take better photos. He also noted with a twinkle in his eye that he loves the series: “Arrow”. He has so many plans which he wants to do with this sport. As a parent, I’m noticing a physical change in him. His posture and stance has improved. This new hobby has gotten him outdoors. He once professed to me that he is an indoor person. I am grateful that archery has taken him from the behind the computer screen and into nature. He is relaxed and is more confident in his physical and mental space.

During my son’s class, the instructor invited me to try. I was reluctant at first. When I held the recurve bow in my left hand, it felt weird. I was uncomfortable for I thought since I was right-handed I would shoot with my right hand. Then I held the bow in my right hand and it felt like I’ve done this before. As I held the bow firmly in my right hand, I gently took an arrow into my left hand and placed it along the bow. I pulled back. But I was afraid… Afraid to let go. The instructor asked me what was wrong. He wanted to know why I did not release the arrow. I told him that I was afraid to let it go. He told me that I should just let the arrow fly. And I did. It hit close to the centre in the red circle. I tried again and the other arrow hit in the centre in the yellow circle. What’s more, is that recently I found out that I shoot better with my glasses off and my hair pulled back.

With this is mind, archery is so symbolic. It has historical value. It has spiritual value. It has currency in this world. Now I ask myself the same question I previously inquired from my son. This is why I do archery. It is indisputable that I love history. The bow and arrow is used in the Bible. It is also referenced in the historical texts with early man which I teach in Caribbean and World history. For instance, Genesis 49:24 reads: But his bow remained firm, and his arms were agile, From the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob. Job 29:20 reads: My glory is ever new with me, And my bow is renewed in my hand.

In Caribbean history the people whom Christopher Columbus found, used the bow and arrow to fight adversaries, protect their families and villages and hunt for food. In initiation rights for boys,  the ability to shoot well was a sign of strength. Archery holds currency in my life as I am more likely to hold onto things. But when I let go, past experience has proven that something amazing usually happens. If I fall, God picks me up and I learn a life lesson. If I fly, it’s an amazing revelation and my life is all the better for it.

Strong people know when to let go. Strength embodies me. From the inception of this blog until now, God has brought me through many trials which have resulted in newly acquired strengths. I am joyful when tested, for I look forward to the valuable lessons to be learnt. When I hold that bow and position the arrow to hit the target, my mind clears. I focus on the present moment, forget every worry and focus on one thing. There I find peace. With peace comes strength and confidence. For quiet confidence is my strength.

With archery, I am using a part of me that I don’t use in my every day life. With archery, I’m left handed and I shoot without my glasses because I hear the shot better than I see it. Furthermore, when I shoot, I connect with another spiritual realm that I’m eager to visit to again. Because it harkens another time and space where I was a strong left-handed, cross-eyed, water bearer, who stopped at nothing to protect her family and community in order to survive and coexist with nature.

So I apply this adage and live life abundantly. Concentrate on the important things in life and don’t worry about anything else. For by putting God first in everything you do, trust that everything else will happen at the right time.

Single Mother

It’s the day before Mothers’ Day. While in the carpark of a supermarket with a list of items to acquire and a reusable shopping bag, I bump into one of my former university colleagues. He was always an old soul trapped in a young man’s body. A great mind to hash out contemporary topics between our history lectures at university. During our impromptu conversation, I asked after his family. He said that his sister always said that she admired my teaching style for history. I smiled and noted that she was one of my best students as well.

After we said our goodbyes, we went into the supermarket our separate ways. Then I resumed the Saturday morning hustle of a single mother. The first boy had archery lessons… yes in 2018 we’re still shooting arrows. Who would have thought it? Last week I had beginners’ luck when the instructor during my son’s session invited me to try it out. This week he wanted to see if it could happen again. The complete opposite happened. I was thinking too much about everything: how to get the target again, what I had to do after the lessons and how was I going to get through everything.

As soon as my son’s session was over the instructor called me aside. He said that he hoped that he wasn’t being out of place but he really admired the way I handled myself as a mom and a teacher. After thanking him for the compliment, I asked him why he thought that it  was out of place. His response was that others may think that it is crossing the line when making those comments on a person’s character.

Twice in one day! Upon reflection of these comments from my former university colleague and my son’s archery instructor, I came to this conclusion. Single motherhood is a lot of work and it takes a lot from you. However, the rewards from it are sweet. It’s true that I get twice the love and the looks of respect from others. But here’s a twist and you probably were not expecting it but I’m really not single at all.

Everyone’s perspective on this is different. I may appear to be single as I have no spouse However, my support systems really don’t make me feel single. Many times I joke about the committee which goes into helping my family run. Before making any decisions, I have to confer with the committee. The committee is made up of everyone who is a part of this single mom journey: my mother, my family and the institutions of the school and the church. My mother is mentioned first because she really supports my dreams as a good mother should. I hope that I can be half the mother to my children as she is to me. Then my family related by blood and spirit help me so much in raising these children with which God has blessed my life. With them by my side, these children want for nothing. Their physical and emotional needs are met. Finally the institutions of the church and school, which work together to mould our professional and spiritual development.

So don’t stop praising single mothers. They need to hear the praise through all of the strength and difficulties. It feels sweet and makes it worth it. Single mothers wake up before everyone else in the family and takes care of the household. Single mothers make it work in terms of taking care of others. Single mothers believe in a power higher than themselves to help them get through. For with that power, they are not single. That power flows through the institutions of the family, school and church. That power that makes it possible for single mothers is the help that comes from the Divine.

And every blessing that has been given to me whether I can see it or I can feel it… I give it back to God. For everything I am… You helped me to be.

Do You Know the Way?

This question has a lot of currency with teenagers, thanks to a popular meme. My students and my son often ask that question with a smirk on their face and quite truthfully it intrigues me. de waySo I did some research on it and found out that it was the meme of January 2018. It is a deformed version of the character Knuckles in the popular video game Sonic. Knuckles forms a group of Ugandan warriors and the followers ask this question: “Do you know de wae?”

Inspired by the Bible reading for this week: John 14: 1-14, I am confident that I know the way. What’s more I know the truth and I also know the life. So the purpose of this blog is to break down another famous “I am” statement of Jesus as well as to link it with contemporary popular culture.

the way

So Jesus said: I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me.” Jesus is the way. This reminds me of a song which one of my favourite gospel singers sings: There’s only one way… This gets me to thinking of one of the most powerful psalms: Psalm 23. For Jesus represents the narrow path, the way less travelled by others because everything else looks so much easier. It looks like everyone else is using it. Our path is difficult at times. For instance when it looks like most people have an opinion, our path may be to speak up and give a voice of reason. It’s not easy going against so many but with Jesus on our side we are never alone.

Jesus says I am the truth. So many quotes of truth are in the Bible. One of the most popular is that the truth will set you free. minority of oneThat has been proven time and time again. It may not be a physical freedom but a mental freedom and ironically that’s where freedom begins: in your mind. Any type of freedom begins with a mind-set. That growth mind-set is rooted in faith. Another truth quote comes from the interrogation of Jesus before Pontius Pilate before he was sent to be crucified. Pilate asked a rhetorical but salient question: what is truth? We still ask ourselves that today: what is truth? What is fake news? What are myths? We must remember that there are three sides to every story: what he says, what she says and the truth. The truth lies in the points of the story which match up. truthFor everyone’s perspective entitles them to their opinions. Opinions are based on facts. The facts which can be proven to some extent is rendered the truth of the situation.

Jesus is the life. When I help others, my life feels so much more complete. When I take care of my mind, my soul and my body, life feels so abundant. Jesus is the life in which He lived as an example for us all. Jesus represents the life. Walk humbly, listen, raise the level of your words, speak when it is necessary and love everyone. These traits are difficult to live by for they go against our instinct as human beings. But if we lived in a way in which we got our way all of the time, we would not be able to live with others.

In the selfie world we live in, we think we know the way. The way and what’s more the truth and the life is in Jesus Christ. Draw closer to him through prayer, reading spiritual books and surrounding yourself with positive influences and positive people. By choosing to go that way there will be an awesome discovery of the truth and the life. So I end with the same rhetorical question with which I began: Do you know the way?

 

 

 

Our Faith Can Move Mountains

1-Corinthians-16-13-14It is humanly impossible to move mountains. Yet with faith, those mountains can move. The mountain causes discomfort and pain at times but through those feelings, growth occurs. My challenge is like a mountain. It looms ahead of me: majestic, unfathomable and larger than life. But I have a tool. This is the tool of determination. Courage is not in the roar of a lion. Courage is simply having the strength to get up again after being knocked over time and time again. So here’s my challenge and I’m not afraid to speak out against it. I was at first, because I was afraid of being made fun of by people. I was afraid that someone will laugh and think that my challenge is invalid.

 

I have been made fun of all of my life and my greatest fear is that people will laugh at me. When I was a little girl, on my way home from school, two boys would taunt me. They insulted my glasses, my hair and the fact that I was a year younger than everyone in the class. That stopped as soon as I told my father about it and he took it up with the boys’ parents and the school teachers.

When I was a teenager, I was teased about my social upbringing in the church. Some called me a “goody two shoes”. I was also teased about the colour of my skin. If only my skin could have been a lighter tone. The tactics I employed in this case, was not to tell my father like before. I ignored the teasing and I associated with a clique to ensure that I would never be alone on the outside. But that was a façade, for I was lonely on the inside, fighting a battle of self-image and self-esteem. Soon after that my tormentors found someone else to make fun of and I was off the hook. Little did I know that they too were fighting a battle of self respect as it was a challenge for them to respect others.

When I became a teacher, I thought that in my adult stage, people would stop making fun of me. But I was mistaken. My knowledge and resources were taken advantage of by those whom I taught and by those who taught with me. I was at a crossroads. What do I do? There is no father to turn to who would speak on my behalf. If I ignore that gives their actions validation and I am way too old for cliques. The answer was simple. The answer was something that I did as a little girl. The answer is to speak out but in the adult forum: through creating social awareness of my challenge. The answer was to treat others like you wanted to be treated: with respect. So I called them aside and had an assertive conversation with them and got to the root and the route of the problem. Consequently we became stronger from these experiences of discomfort.

But there is one thing that I’ve learnt so far in this life. Fear does not get you anywhere. If you distract yourself by other people’s expectations, you would not have time to focus on your own. This is how I’m dealing with my challenge. First, I am doing qualitative and quantitative research. I am asking other persons if they have this challenge as well. I am reading articles on this challenge and observing what other persons have done in their situations. I am not alone in this. For by viewing what others have done in their situations, I am able to adapt their solutions and fit them to my own circumstances. Then I will quantify the problem by compiling tangible research: facts, percentages and surveys. By doing this, the challenge will become more visible to myself and others. To know is to have a direct connection to omnipotence.

Therefore with the combination of research and observation, solutions to my challenge will be implemented. The mountain can move or be immovable. The most important factor is that I have changed as a person. That this experience will continue to strengthen my capacity for understanding self and others around me. That this experience will edify the spiritual journey, which we call life.

So let’s face it, I will be made fun of because everything that they ridicule is what makes me who I am. It’s what sets me apart from the rest. It defines my identity. It makes me unique. God does not make mistakes. He makes miracles. So I’m not afraid of others making fun or laughing at me, for I’m strong enough to laugh with them and wise enough identify the fear and seek the faith that can move the mountains in my life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Good Friday”?

You know I am a Rebel.

I’m a divorced single mom of two boys who still goes to church. The church I go to is full of rituals. To try to explain them to you would take all day…and you still wouldn’t understand them all. But I do it anyway. I go to church because one would least expect it. First off I’m divorced, yet I still believe in marriage. I’m a single mother by choice. It is more peaceful that way and I love my space and I love my independence and I love how strong of a woman I am. Yet that still doesn’t mean that I don’t need or want a man. After all I have two sons. From since I was a little girl, my parents taught me what we want most for our children: to be healthy, wise and good. The boys have fathers in their lives: first and foremost the Heavenly Father and he sends examples of men in their lives who are providers and protectors. God always provides.

So what does this have to do with Good Friday? Every year my church has a three hour church service. Most people roll their eyes at the thought and figure it out to be one word: “boring”. But I figure if you can stand up three or more hours at a fete, you can sit down for 3 or less hours in church and listen and experience the Word of God. You might learn something. Some counter that argument by stating that at a fete you enjoy yourself. Big misconception! I party too and to tell you the truth some fetes are sooo boring, especially if the music isn’t right. It can really turn you off. So this Good Friday my family and I went to church… for three hours and no one fell asleep. The four year old had colouring activities and snacks for days. The older boy was involved in the activities at the altar. I wrote down interesting notes in my journal and mom well she was enjoying time with the family. I caught her looking at her grandsons proudly every now and then. In Proverbs it says that grandchildren are jewels around the neck and I love to see her jewels shine in my mom’s eyes.

That’s what’s so good about Good Friday: unconditional love. Not only in my family but also in God’s family. “God so loved the world, that He sent His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. Jesus preached the way of love and peace. His death was the world’s example of how such an injustice could bring healing through decisions which could solve the world’s violence. Crucifixion was an extremely violent way to go, yet through that Jesus brought the whole world to himself as he was lifted up on the cross. He brought the world together through languages as the inscription above him was written in the main languages of that time. He brought Romans and Jews together. He even brought his mom and the disciple whom He loved together as He let her know that He had to leave but reassured her that He is still here.

That’s what so good about Good Friday. Jesus had to leave…but He’s still here. All around us. Comforting us, being there for us in so many ways. Providing for us and protecting us, because we believe in Him and we will not perish. Our lives would not have been lived in vain. For we will pass down the goodness of unconditional love from generation to generation as we desire nothing for them but to be healthy, wise and good.

 

 

 

 

4 Things I would say to my ex

Strong women are that way for a reason. No matter how many times life knocks you over, you make the decision to get back up again and fight. “Cry a river. Build a bridge. Move on.” It’s difficult to admit that you were wrong. It’s difficult to build from the broken pieces. Yet you pull yourself together and move on. Life lesson. True story.

The truth is that divorce is a double edged sword of pain and peace. It was painful because the person you spoke to everyday is now gone. It was peaceful because all of the fighting was finished. You fight no more and it feels great.

If I ever saw my ex again, I would tell him these 4 things:

  1. I’m better off without you.
  2. Thank you for the good times.
  3. Thank you for showing me what I don’t want in a partner.
  4. I’m happy now.

(Drops mic, shrugs and walks away)

 

 

Rebel

I can not even see my tattoos. Why? Because they are on my back. I put them there so I could hide them from my parents…but I ended up hiding them from myself. Go figure.

I got them in my first semester at university. No parents permission needed. My boyfriend at the time funded me. I went to the parlour with my new best friend. Actually it was in the hair dresser salon in town. The artist’s name was Troy and he was cute. My friend and I decided to get our zodiac signs. Mine is Aquarius. We were so afraid that it would hurt. We heard the stories of how to make sure that the needles were sterilised. We heard the stories of how they were not acceptable in Christian circles. We heard the stories of tattoos that went wrong.

No lie. It hurt at first. But once I got used to the needle it started to tickle. I put the first tattoo on my lower back. More tattoos came after that. The trend at the time was to have a rose in the centre of the lower back. For the pants at that time were a low-waist style. I had two jeans that would have complimented that tattoo. The first one had silver studs from the hip to the bottom of the pant leg. The second jeans was laced up at the front. Really sexy.

The second tattoo was difficult for two reasons. The red rose had to be redone because I did not hold colour well. Also the rose was around my spine. Anyone who has had a tattoo knows the discomfort which is experienced when the needles come into contact with a bone. It is recommended that tattoos be done on fleshy areas of the body.

Yet I went on to get another tattoo. My third tattoo was about music, my greatest love. The only problem I had with it was the size. It was the smallest tattoo I ever had and it was on my shoulder blade. After that I stopped getting tattoos. The appeal had gone and they were getting to be quite costly.

Why did I get tattoos? I was at a rebellious stage in my life. I wanted to do something memorable. I wanted to say I have been there and done that. It was all about me. Today they are faded pictures…memories of a past that I enjoyed but that is not my reality. I would not want to remove them and I would not want to have another one because that stage of rebel is gone and all that is left is peaceful contentment and understanding.