I pull my hair back to wash my face in the morning. Messy bun on top of my head, if my hair is cooperating; hair falling in my face, now soaking wet, if it’s not. Looking up in the mirror I see just me – sleepy eyed, pre-coffee Krysti. As I turn my head to grab the towel, something new peaks out from behind my ear.
I’m at work and clients are stressing me out. I’m in the middle of a group text with friends, but not the fun kind. That cute boy I want to be texting me isn’t texting me. I get unkind comments on my blog. I’m grocery shopping and realizing I forgot to make a list, forgot to check my planner, forgot to check my budget. I get another email asking for another commitment. I sigh and push my hair behind my ear, my fingers tracing the skin behind it.
I’m at yoga staring at myself in the mirror. I used to hide in the back corner; now I force myself to go up front, up close and personal with the wall of mirrors. Partly to be able to better keep my forever horrible posture in check, partly because I’ve been trying to stare at the hot mess I am during yoga (sweaty, no make up, hair falling out, me falling over) and learning to love her. Learning to accept her. It’s been helping me no longer hide from the hot mess I can be in life sometimes – and love that girl, too.
I can’t see it from my yoga mat, because I’m keeping my chin slightly tucked, my gaze straight ahead (#yogi), but I can feel it burning from behind my ear.
I grew up in the conservative, tattoos-are-of-the-devil kind of Christianity.
When I asked – repeatedly – to get my nose pierced and kept getting refused, I finally told my parents I was getting my nose pierced. What’s the saying about it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission? I’ve learned it’s better to tell than ask at all. (You’re welcome, rebels everywhere.)
After I told them – after the initial freak out – I was eventually told you’re an adult, make your own decisions, I guess – as long as you promise to never get any crazy tattoos!!!
I promised to never get any crazy tattoos.
As someone who is a serious planner, I love that both my tattoos were spontaneous events. To be clear, I thought about them both for over a year, asked a friend to draw both, held on to the drawings for months… that’s spontaneous, right?? But both tattoos, after firm plans in my mind, involved a whim – me texting friends the day before with “Sooo, want to come with me to get a tattoo tomorrow?”
My first one I toasted with donuts after, as we discovered a donut shop adjacent to the tattoo parlor. This one required gelato – because someone knew a place a few blocks away. I love friends who love me well; I love friends who celebrate life in the same ways I do. (Lots of sugar.)
I love that as much meaning as both my tattoos already have, in and of themselves, both have infinitely more meaning because of who I got them with. Words tattooed forever on my body, memories of who was sitting with me forever in my heart. I’m continually learning how powerful the force of community can be; I’m continually learning I need people. I’m forever grateful for these friends’ presence in my life – in the big moments and the small.
I need it whispered into my ear every morning. I need it whispered into my ear every night. I need it whispered into my ear every second of every day, because how easily I tend to forget.
I am enough for you. I am. Just Me.
Stop looking for your worth in other things, in other people. Stop judging who you are on likes or post views, on social plans or number of dates. You don’t need any of that to complete you; you just need Me. I am enough for you. I promise I will always be.
And you are enough. As you are. Just you.
Stop trying to earn My love; stop trying to prove your abilities. Stop running around like a crazy person, committing to more, more, more – start remembering that you are perfect, just as you are. Start remembering I made you this way, and I love you this way. Start living in that truth – embracing the beauty of who you are. You are enough. You always will be.
Some people scoff at tattoos, as they’ll be on you forever. Forever! What if you change your mind? What if you don’t like that design or font or placement in 5, 10, 30 years? What if your skin gets old and wrinkly? Some people can’t fathom branding your body so permanently.
I read about a lady who was covered in tattoos – who would go get a new one whenever she felt like it. Her friend asked her about the permanence, how she came to terms with putting something on her body forever. She responded, surprised, stating our bodies are so very temporary.
Isn’t that funny? We’re constantly so worried about our earthly bodies, taking care of them, trying not to ruin them. And yet they’re so very temporary, at the end of the day. Just bodies. Not souls.
Im not about to go cover my body with tattoos (I promise, mom!) based on this logic – but I love it. I love the beauty and the embracing of humanity and the arms wide open approach it involves. I think we need to remember our bodies are temporary vessels in other aspects of life, I think we need to be reminded more often there’s more to life than the physical.
I think, just maybe, as someone whose body has never worked properly – who already has daily reminders the human body is fragile and out of our control – maybe it doesn’t bother me as much. Maybe the idea of permanence just doesn’t phase me, when I have so many other battle scars that were out of my control. Maybe I need the reminder of healing, more than anything else. Maybe I need the reminder of grace and the promise of enough when my body isn’t doing it’s job. When it’s failing me again. When I feel like I’m failing again.
I need the constant reminder; I need the constant whisper of Truth. It’s a two part whisper, it’s a two part reminder. A forever reminder.