The seven wonders with a twist?

cc licensed ( BY NC ND ) flickr photo shared by Kuzeytac

The lovely Brenda, from GrrlGuide, recently participated in the “Seven Wonders” activity which is currently circulating the blogosphere.

In her post, Brenda confessed that she thought long and hard before participating because she’s not a joiner.

In spite of this, she delivered a wonderful summary of her seven “aha” moments and diligently passed the baton to four other bloggers.

I was honored to see I was one of those bloggers, but like her, suffered the same angst.

Not in regard to being a joiner, because much as I covet my personal space, I love being a part of any crazy, bizarre, loud, hip, and out of this world insane, won’t you join us, shindig.

Instead, like Brenda, I shied at the thought that this post would be seen as a shameless self marketing strategy.

However, I’ve decided that any reader who knows me, won’t think that at all.

And so, I’ve decided to join this fun event, but with a twist.

Come on, you knew that was coming, didn’t you?

Instead of naming which post I consider to be my most beautiful, popular, controversial, and so on, I’ve decided to showcase the one I felt, “Didn’t get the attention it deserved.”


Because just last night, the Son approached me and said, “I’ve been thinking about getting another tattoo.”

I literally sucked in my breath.

Not because he’s covered in tats, but because I didn’t know if I was ready to repeat what I went through the first time.

When he asked, “What do you think, Mom? Any ideas for my new tat?”
I replied, “I thought I still had a chance of getting you to laser off the first one.”

Needless to say, my reaction caused the heir to my debt to walk away mumbling, “Alex’s mom wouldn’t have said that.”

Well, maybe Alex’s mom didn’t go through what I went through the first time.

And how was the first time?

Read on and you’ll understand.

Does this mean you’ve grown up?

cc licensed flickr photo shared by michale

Yesterday my son got a tattoo.

Ironically, I’m the one who’s in pain.

I’m sure my pain qualifies as post traumatic stress.

I still can’t get over the fact that less than 24 hours ago, I was staring at his bare arm and today, my eyes have to witness what I consider to be a drawing of, well, whatever it is.

And it’s for life. No washing this bad boy off with soap and water.

It’s a keeper.

How I wish it was the kind he used to put on when he was a little boy.

Remember the ones that came wrapped around a piece of bubblegum?

I was even against him putting those on, but the little rebel would sneak them in his backpack and stick them on his arms and legs.

He knew the consequences: straight to the bath, no if, and, or but.

His little sticker tattoos went down the drain with the bath water only to return the next day.

But now it’s different.

It’s hard to think I will never again look at his bare, human arm again.

This new arm has taken a life of its own; powered by permanent black and gray ink.

I guess I should be flattered he was wise enough to include my name on his creation.

Yet on some strange level, I think this makes me an accessory to his crime; aiding and abetting to deface his body.

A body that is a sacred vessel; provided to him for his journey through life.

A part of me thinks he’s graffitied his temple and the man upstairs must be very angry indeed.

I don’t buy into the sales pitch that he’s enhanced his body, made it better, or decorated it.

I believe it was perfect the way it was.

My life has changed with the acquisition of his tattoo.

I now have to worry about bleeding, scabbing, plasma leakage, and potential skin infections.

I now have to be his personal nurse; help him to clean it, pat it dry and grease it with petroleum jelly.

I now have to make sure he rests, eats plenty of protein, and remind him he can’t work out or lie in the sun for the next three weeks.

I now have to wonder if some day they’ll stop him as he attempts to clear Customs to verify if his tattoo’s in the tattoo data base.

Will he no longer be able to work for the FBI, CIA or Homeland Security?

Will he buy a Harley and ride into the sunset never to be seen again?

Will he die of some rare jungle fever they discover came from the ink that was used in his tat?

Will he decide that one tattoo is not enough and continue to ink his body until he becomes unrecognizable?

I’ve gone from being the carefree mother of a child without a tattoo, to being the stressed mother of a young man with a permanent ink blob on his arm.

I can’t fall asleep anymore.

I can’t fall asleep because worrying about this stuff keeps me awake.

Could I have prevented it?
Should I have put my foot down?
Refused to pay for it?
Blackmailed him into not doing it?

It doesn’t help to fret. It’s too late.

The deed has been done and now all I can do is accept it.

Accept that the little boy who bought bubblegum just to get the little bug tattoos has grown up.

Perhaps this is the real reason I hurt.

Maybe I hurt cause I realize my little boy is no more.

He’s grown into a capable, strong, decisive young man.
With a big blob of ink on his arm.

I mean, a tattoo.

I am now the mother of the boy with a tatoo.
I mean, the young man with a tattoo.

The kind that doesn’t wash away with soap and water.

As you can see, the idea of having to go through all this again is agonizing.

Nevertheless, I wanted to share it with all of you as the post that “didn’t get the attention it deserved.”

I hope you’ll agree!

Thank you, Brenda, for thinking of me!

Happy Monday!


38 thoughts on “The seven wonders with a twist?

  1. Bella – you are more than welcome and deserve more, if only I had something of value to give, but I only have my gratitude for keeping me honest and true to my voice. I cried a little tear reading your post. I know this feeling all too well. I skyped with the daughter on Saturday night–she is finally homesick–as we chatted I noticed the tips of her hair, which are now hot pink. It’s not the same as a tat, but it’s another reminder they have the wings we gave them. I don’t think we ever stop worrying. It’s kind of overwhelming if you think about it. When younger women contemplating motherhood ask me my thoughts on the subject I try to keep it lite when I respond. “It’s not about the cute baby Gap clothes.” Most of them think I’m kidding, but the truth is that it is so much more. Wonderful as ever, Miss Bella. Keep ‘m coming. You’re a bright spot in our day.

    1. Dear Brenda, your valuable feedback is more than any material gift you could give! Thank you! I”m delighted you both approve and like the post! Pink tips? Oh girl, that crap washes off or can get cut off! No worries on that front, but you’re right. They’ve sprouted wings, flown the coop, and are now soaring high in the sky. As long as they don’t crash dive, we’re okay! :) As for the new mommies, I used to be one that thought motherhood was about the cute Baby Gap clothes. Boy was I sorely mistaken! And yet it’s part of life–our life. I always say mothers have to be like Timex watches–take a lickin’ and keep on tickin’! Power on, mamacita! :)

  2. Bella, this is great. Firstly, I love the “seven wonders” idea. Secondly, I love your “twist” :) I would never tell my parents, ok my MOM, that I want to get a tattoo. I think she would feel the same way. I’m pretty sure she felt the same way when I got more ear piercings or when I tried to get my nose pierces (and failed) :) hahaha!

    1. Laura, you’re a good daughter. I want to adopt you! hee hee! If you want to participate in the Seven Wonders, I bequeath you the baton! Hey, it’s my right and I will if I want to, right? So please, please feel free to run with it and do a blog post. You’ve been handed the baton! Run! :)

  3. I can understand how you feel Bella. It’s always difficult when your kids do something that you are against. My mind would be going through the same thoughts as you, but the bottom line is they are grown and it is ultimately their choice what they do with their skin. I love how you changed the rules of the “seven wonders!” Another terrific post!

    1. Annie, do you think someone will report me to Bloggers.Inc for breaking the rules, norms, regulations? My defense will be that I’m a rebel at heart who refuses to conform to society’s expectations! hee hee! I’m delighted I have your seal of approval! And you’re right–once they’re grown, there’s little we can do but smile. :)

  4. I’m so glad you shared your unappreciated post. I don’t have kids, but because of what you’ve written, I can feel what a tough thing it was for you to have such permanent evidence that your child has grown up and is now choosing a direction that you don’t approve.

    1. Shary, it’s been more than a year since the tattoo made its way to the Son’s arm and if I’m honest, I’ve grown accustomed to it. I will not lie–I wish he didn’t have it, but what’s a mother to do, right? I’m glad you like the post! :)

  5. I enjoyed this too, Bella. I hadn’t ever really thought of this from a parental perspective. Honestly! Only from my own, and yes I have several tattoos. I love them. I have a pierced nose too. I just like art and self-expression. I’d like to think I’d be fine if my kids (once they are 18!) want to get a tattoo but truthfully, I might feel sad the way you do. We remember their little baby bodies, so sweet and innocent and fresh from our womb. I think you are onto something when you say this might be more about him becoming a man than getting the body art. You gave me something to think about! (Like I really need MORE to contemplate?) :-)

    1. Michael Ann, I knew you’d get it! Absolutely, this is a post tinged with nostalgia. On one hand, I know he’s at an age where he makes his own decisions and goes forward no matter what, and on the other, the mother in me is trying to come to grips with the fact that her little boy is no longer a little boy. Sigh. Believe it or not, I never had this problem with the Daughter. She has five tattoos! However, she never consulted the process with me, or asked how I felt about her getting them. She just went ahead and got them, one by one. At this point, all I can say is if she’s happy, I’m happy! :) Just you wait till yours are asking for advice and what to ink on their bodies! hee hee!

    2. Hi again! It’s interesting that you don’t have that with your daughter. Must be a mother/son thing. I feel very protective of my boys in that sense. I feel like girls are so much stronger. Ouch! But true! Maybe that is how you feel too, so you trust her to make the right decisions for herself. This is getting more and more interesting! :-)

    3. Michael Ann, you’re absolutely right! I trust the Daughter to make the right decision without my having to hover over what she does. Not to mention the fact that she’s already 25. :) I was always overprotective of her but cut the apron strings when she was 18. With the Son, it’s different. And yes, it must be the mother/son thing. I’m certain of it! Thank you for your insight. I’m much obliged! :)

  6. Now you reminded me of a young woman I met once, while standing in the line in the post office, waiting to pay some bills. It was a long line, she was standing in front of me, we were bored, so we started to chat. She had a piercing in her nose, so I asked her about it. She worked as a nurse; on the one side, she wasn’t allowed to wear the piercing at work, because it might upset some patients, and on the other side, she had enough professional knowledge to know what to do with it and how to avoid infections and possible problems. And then she told me something hilarious: in public transportation, those guys who check out whether you have a ticket or not – well, they never dared to approach her. Because of that tiny little piercing in her nose – and she looked quite normal and was very polite and nice.

    Now, I realize your post isn’t really about piercings or tattoos, it’s about the post about your fear of your son (how old is he now, may I ask?) growing up that didn’t get all the attention you felt it deserved. I don’t have kids of my own (or tattoos or piercings, for that matter), but I do have parents, and while my father treated me like an independent adult even when I was little, my mother was, and still is, a panicker (is that even a word?). I’m almost 35 now, and she still doesn’t know how to treat me like an adult (come to think of it, she tends to tell everyone what to do, and doesn’t get it how someone can think otherwise), how to accept that a plenty of my choices won’t be the same as hers. Don’t get me wrong, I love my mother, but I growl at her quite often to keep her at bay. I hope the relationship you have with your son never becomes like that, he sounds like a good young man.

    Wow, this was long. I hope I haven’t bored you to death, and I hope this didn’t sound like preaching or like telling you what to do with your own son. :)

    1. Ivana, in a month, my son will turn 20. Our relationship is the best any mother can hope for. He is truly the best son a mother could ask for. My post at the time, was about how difficult it is to let go; the nostalgia that is felt when a mother realizes her child is grown up. Thank you for sharing your story. I enjoy reading all your comments! :)

  7. Bella, what a bittersweet tale! Re tats: it’s rare these days to find anyone under 30 without lots of ’em (in the US and Europe), so if your son only has 2 he’s being very restrained. Maybe he’ll let you photograph them and show us??? Tell him your readers are curious to see his “blobs of ink.”

    1. Jann, he only has one for the moment. Lately he’s been pondering the possibility of acquiring a new one. I’m hoping he’ll reconsider! :) I wish I could share his tattoo with all of you but it has his sister’s name on it as well and he’s very guarded about disclosing anything personal. It’s a beauty though. He even designed it himself! He graduated from a visual arts academy and is very talented! Yep, I’m a proud mama! :)

  8. Bella, I love how you describe sadness and loss with such acceptance and humor. Touched as I was, every time you mentioned the “ink blot,” I had to smile. Thanks for sharing it!

  9. —Beautiful, Bella,
    I didn’t blog the seven wonders, either. I am too boring to go thru all that :)))
    About the tattoo…Don’t worry. It will be okay. What you are really worried about is your son becoming a man. It is bittersweet, isn’t it? Letting go of those boyish things, our motherly things, our nurturing ways?
    What is the tattoo? Your name is in it?
    This post is marvelous. I love love love it. And i love you xxx

    1. Kim, your words always bring comfort to my soul. Thank you! What’s this I hear? Too boring for the seven wonders? I don’t think so! And you’re right–this rite of passage was indeed bittersweet. Luckily, it was more than a year ago and by now I’ve gotten used to looking at the ink blob! The tattoo is of a cross that has a sash with the Daughter’s name and mine on it. Carefully etched in the details are his granddad’s initials. The Son got the tattoo just a month after my father passed away. I’m tickled pink you like the post! Love you back, lady! :)

    1. Ariana, 12 years old was one of the best years of the Son! He’s always been a great student, but that year, he was on the honor role all year long! Yep, you better hold on tight. They grow up so fast! Your older baby is already a man! I know, why don’t we call them, “man baby?” hee hee! :)

  10. Bella, this is a tough one for me too, but with with a twist. :) I have two tattoos myself, the first one inked at 19 and the second on my 30th birthday and I have seriously been thinking about getting another, a bird for my mother, who’s name was Robin. But I think I will flip out if the girls come home in 15 years all tatted up. Double standard? You bet. But I’m their mama and their little bodies are beautiful ink free. So I’ll just cross that bridge when I come to it.

    1. hahaha! Indeed can we say double standard! :) I have no tattoos, nor will I ever get any. Perhaps this is why it was even harder to see something permanent on his arm. I mean, this bad boy ain’t washing off, you know? However, I do see the sentiment behind tattoos that have meaning for the person. The Son designed his tattoo and so it’s his personal art work inked on his arm as well, you know?

  11. Bella, I offer you my shoulder. Come, let us commiserate together. My son moved 3,000 miles away to freely ink his skin, pierce the brows, nose… and so I hope you feel better knowing your son felt free enough to tattoo while still under your roof. How old is the guy? Mine in way grown! But, tattoos and rings, he’s still a gentle-spirited and wonderful soul. I guess they just want to make a statement ;-( Ugh!

    1. Indeed, Debra, lets commiserate together. Wait! Let me get the coffee! Must they make a statement using permanent ink? That’s what I want to know. However, our children are kindred spirits because in spite of the tattoo, mine too is a sweetheart who never fails to say “I love you” to him mom every time she calls him on his cell phone! I’m glad yours is a gentle soul. We have raised them well, with or without the ink! :)

  12. I’m glad you reposted this post. I never used to care much for tattoos, but I’ve grown to appreciate them (just like graffiti). I’ve been watching those tattoo shows on T.V. — Miami Ink, LA Ink, New York Ink… and I’m now in awe of the artists work. It’s really hard to do draw on human skin and do something artistic. Some of the work is really spectacular. And then, I also enjoy finding out the reason why the person picks a particular tattoo, why they want one. There are some really nice and touching reasons. It’s amazing to see how happy they are when they get their tattoo. I’m sure your son has an interesting reason for his choice of tattoo and I think it’s pretty cool that he feels comfortable enough to come and mention his tattoo and ask if you have any ideas. I know! He should get a tat of Roxy! I love those portrait tattoos. A tattoo of Roxy ain’t so bad, is it? That would be awesome! LOL! I guess I’ll think differently when I’m a mom, huh? In the meantime, please don’t ban me from your blog, for writing this, and don’t delete my blogs from your list. LOL! BTW, I heard tattoos are addictive. ;-) Don’t worry, I get the impression your son has a good head on his shoulders. He and his tat(s) will be all right. But seriously, I’m loving the idea of a Roxy tattoo. xoxo

    1. Paz, I just shared your comment with the Son and we have been laughing for the past five minutes! He asked Roxy, “What do you think Roxy?” and she just cocked her head to the side as if to indicate, “Now what?” I think a little Roxy tattoo would be the cutest thing ever! Too bad it’s not a “guy thing” as the Son calls it. I’m with you on how some tattoos are a work of art. It’s incredible the work these artists do! I may not like my children having them, but it doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the art! :) Thanks for the suggestion, Paz. You made our evening!

  13. Whew! I’m glad you didn’t automatically ban me from your blog for my suggestion and instead got a good laugh. ;-) Umm.. Not to be a bad influence or anything but tell your son that a tat of Roxy is SO a “guy thing” in many ways. It attracts the girls. LOL! Who wouldn’t fall for a guy with a tat of the cutest dog? Heh heh heh! Okay, so if your son won’t get a Roxy tat. How ’bout you? You can get one? What do you think? That would be so cool. I’m sure your son would tell you it would be. Maybe on your arm… the bicep area… Or your calf… Or… What? What’s the matter? You’re re-considering banning me, again, aren’t you. Oh, oh! I think I should have made this an anonymous comment…

    1. Paz, you have me giggling again! Much as I love Roxy, and yes, she is the cutest dog, I would not get a tattoo of her. Well, maybe a henna tattoo! Hey, there’s a compromise! Maybe I’ll even get the Son to do it based on the good reason you’ve given! I’ll keep you posted! Oh, and Paz, I would never ban you from my blog! I like your photos too much! hee hee! :)

    2. LOL! Yes, a henna tattoo is a wonderful compromise. I like the sound of that. A henna tattoo for everyone. Even me. ;-) Thanks for not banning me. xoxox

  14. Bella, this is a hysterical post! And I would feel the exact same way if Sophie came how with a tattoo. Another things one cannot do with a tattoo is be buried in a Jewish cemetery. Not that you and your son are concerned about that one. But I thought I’d throw it out there on the list of why one should not tattoo.

    1. Leah, I’m grateful for your mention of the Jewish stance on tattoos when it comes time to bury a person. Jewish burial practices is one of the subjects the Son learned about in one of his religion courses in college. And I learned them right along with him since he would share everything that he learned with me. Incredibly, people do things without thinking of the long term repercussions. For example, what if you wanted to convert to Judaism? Would a tattoo be a hindrance in this decision? I feel you should always weigh the consequences of your actions before taking any step. Thank you for sharing this with us! :)

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