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Tattoos Can Be a Beautiful Reminder Or a Painful Lesson

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by Parker Montour

Kids have been thinking and talking about getting tattoos since the moment they fall in love with something. From wanting to get your eighth grade boyfriend’s name on your back to getting Yoda on your forehead. Kids have been discussing and giving each other tattoos, fake or real, for the longest time.

The general age for tattoo parlours to tattoo is 18, but by law, it depends on the state to regulate the age. In Maryland, it is up to the tattoo parlour to decide the minimum age. Most tattoo parlours in Frederick keep the age at 18 for safety reason behind them. “I got my tattoos on my hands at the same time,” said junior Cassidy Flood, “I’ve always wanted these tattoos for multiple, very-special-to-my-heart reasons. The three dots relate to my art signature. Art’s been a huge part of my life, and I’m dedicating myself to it. I put it on my ring finger to represent my commitment. It’s a reminder that I’ll always have my art no matter what goes wrong in my life. It’s really calming to look at.” The quote she got was from Harry Potter. She got the words “I must not tell lies.” in white ink on her right hand.

“So, I got my tattoo August 7th around 10 pm, in Daytona Beach, Florida. Well, actually just outside of Daytona. It’s illegal to pierce or tattoo inside the city,” said Flood. Her tattoos aren’t just for show. Each one has a meaning and reason. “I could write you a mile long paper on why I love the series and everything and anything to do with it, but I’ll spare you. Really, this quote has more to do with the scene and the circumstances in which Harry got the scar. It’s abuse that he has a permanent reminder of. Yet, it never phases him and I respect that highly. I use it as a way of coping with bad situations in my own life,” said Flood.

“I love tattoos. I have so many I want to get. Such as a bumblebee on my forearm, to represent my childhood, along side sleeve of honeycomb, mushrooms, and blackberries. The robot from Castle in the Sky, because that was my favorite childhood movie. Possibly some Icelandic/Finnish protection symbols on my fingers to represent my heritage and my love for runes. Maybe a small dinosaur, I really prefer stick and poke tattoos. That’s not even half the tattoos I have planned. I want so many,” said junior Miles Dice. A Stick and Poke tattoo is a kind of tattooing that involves using a sharp point and repeatedly stabbing and injecting ink into your skin to make your tattoo.

Tattoos are permanent. Yes, there is a way to remove them, but the process can be painful and expensive. Laser tattoo removal uses light to break up the ink that was absorbed into the skin. Laser removal can cost anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 dollars depending on the size, ink type and age of tattoo. There are a few ways to remove a tattoo, consisting of Surgical Excision, which is cutting the tattoo off and sewing the skin back together, leaving a scar behind. Dermabrasion, where you sand away the inked skin, leaving a scar or pale area behind. You can learn more at http://www.docshop.com/education/dermatology/body/tattoo-removal.  

This being said, before getting a tattoo, you must be one hundred percent certain that this is what you want. Tattoos can be a beautiful reminder of things important to you, or they can be a painful reminder of that lover you had for a week. Make sure you know what you are getting yourself into before getting a tattoo.

“They’re a part of me,” said Flood, “They always will be, but I don’t have to let it affect me negatively. I can make it art. If you’re under 18, almost everywhere you go will require parental permission for the tattoo and for them to be there while it happens. My mother signed for me to get them, I paid. She respected my decision because I got tattoos with meaning and not just for show.”