Home > Life > I love my tattoo.

I love my tattoo.

This past March, I got a tattoo. On one hand, it felt a little impulsive, but on the other hand, it was something I’d been thinking about for the last 13 years. I got a scorpion tattooed on the inside of my left wrist. Yes, my astrological sign is Scorpio, but I could care less about astrology. My tattoo is about my brother. We’re both Scorpios. When he was 19, he got a scorpion tattooed on his bicep. Honestly, I thought it was out of character for him to get a tattoo. My brother was hyper nerdy so a tattoo seemed strange on him. Looking back though, he wasn’t really the type of person that fit easily into any sub-cultural box. He arranged his physical appearance in a hodge podge of things he liked without any regard to what kind of image he might convey.

When my brother got his tattoo, he didn’t tell anyone in our family about it. When asked, he dodged further inquiry by saying it was fake. I didn’t even realize that his astrological sign meant anything to him. When he died, his best friends all got scorpions on their arms in his honor. At the time, I sort of wanted to get one as well, but I was only 17. So that was that. Years went by and whenever the subject of tattoos would come up in conversation, the only thing I would ever consider was a scorpion like my brother had. However, I also always said I would never get a tattoo. I didn’t think I was the tattoo type. I, like my brother, am hyper nerdy. Smoking cigarettes does nothing for my image. I frequently get way too visibly excited about things to ever come across as demure or composed. I thought a tattoo on me would just look silly.

This past March, though, a number of small and big things in my life manifested at once and I found myself missing my brother a lot. I wanted very badly to connect with him. I am not a religious person; I would not even consider myself a spiritual person. When it comes to people I have lost, grave sites and urns never mean much to me. My family had my brother cremated and several years ago, my dad and I scattered his ashes in the ocean off the South Carolina coast. We believed that is what he would have liked, to simply dissolve. I still feel content with our action, but there have been times in the past though that I wished so badly that I could have some symbol of my brother, some image of him that didn’t make me only feel his absence. So in March, the only wild thing I did during spring break was get a scorpion tattoo. It’s bright yellow and outlined in black and turquoise. I wanted the body to be as bright as possible because my brother had a trillion watt smile, and really, as cliched as it sounds, he was as important to me as the sun. As for the turquoise, I wanted something that was also bright, but calming as well. It’s very simple looking and the process only took the tattoo artist about 30 minutes to complete. But there it is.

Yesterday, I graduated from my Master’s program in Social Work. Any major event in my life, good or bad, always makes me miss my brother. More than anything, even after 13 years, I still wish he could be by my side during important moments. However, yesterday I was glad to be able to just turn my left wrist over a take a quick glance here and there, think of Scott, and feel like he was with me all day.

  1. May 15, 2012 at 16:21

    This is beautiful, Lori. And yes, his smile was awesome. It will forever be in engraved in my mind. You and Scott are both wonderful parts of my childhood memories!

  2. May 16, 2012 at 08:28

    great piece Lori. Congratulations once again. Love to you and your angel (Scott).

    • May 16, 2012 at 14:28

      Thank you, Auntie Claire. I love you! x0x0

  3. ajem8675309@hotmail.com
    May 18, 2012 at 08:55

    Lori, I’m so in awe of your courage to fight your way through your Masters program (shingles and all!) on a path to finding the career that you want. I don’t know what I believe happens to people when they are gone but, for the most part, I do believe that they are somehow still around or still a part of us especially if you make it a point to keep them as a part of your life. I think, if ever there was a reason to get a tattoo, you found one and I believe that Scott shared your graduation moment with you this week. Congratulations again on graduating =)

    • May 20, 2012 at 13:35

      Thank you so much, Jenny! And it means so much to me that you and Dennis are in my life. ❤ ❤ ❤

  4. Jeannie
    May 21, 2012 at 17:52


  1. February 18, 2013 at 13:46

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