Yes!!! Finally! I Did it!
At first, it was a rather simple idea… a thin straight line from my elbow to my wrist within the middle the letters that spelled the name of my one and only baby girl. ____Miley____
But. I was still breastfeeding. And everyone strongly advised against it back then. (this was 7 years ago) Fair enough I thought So after 3 years of breastfeeding It became clear there would be another baby sooner or later. Might as well wait a bit and make it a line with two names.
My second baby girl was born and I remember doodling on every piece of paper their names in one long connected line. ____Miley____&___Haley____ Trying to get the shape and caligraphy just right.
Like practicing an autograph, The line had to have the perfect flow and casual hand-drawn feel to it, styled and still be straight and readable. Not too curly not to dull, but just interesting enough. And certainly not some standard existing Font. Besides that, I still had to wait. Because…still breastfeeding.
Haley became 1,5 and I started searching for the right Tatoo artist. I was prepared to travel If I’d found one further away. As long as the artist could make clean thin lines and I felt “right” about the person behind the needle. As I would wair his or her “mark” for the rest of my days, I was making sure It would be a positive experience.
And then I became pregnant with baby nr.3 The most beautiful little-unexpected surprise of our lives. And by now, you must know, I had been waiting for 5 years to get this thing on my arm… So back to the drawing board to add one more name. ___Miley___Haley___Quinn___ Sometimes I even took a pen and drew it on my arm and took a selfie to see how it would look! Now I’m typing this I realize that this may sound a bit obsessed. Well, maybe I was.
When Quinn was still a newborn we were in a nearby town when we passed by this awesome looking tattoo shop. It wasn’t like any tattoo shop I’d ever seen. It was light, fresh, with a gorgeous mandala-logo on the window. Inside there were plants and beautiful artwork. The whole shop looked welcoming, soft, friendly and creative. So we walked in and we met Manon from Le Nou Tattoo. Her artwork is just amazingly full of feminine shapes and figures, detailed mandalas, Botanics, and subtle shades and razor-sharp fine lines Check out her Instagram here. She was so friendly, relaxed with a calm confidence that just made me trust her instantly! But Quinn was still a Tiny baby. So I waited just a bit longer.
“The line had to have the perfect flow and casual hand-drawn feel to it.”
When Quinn got one-year-old I became impatient. A few years back my eldest daughter still breastfed occasionally until she was 5 years old. That would mean that it would take another whole four years before I could have my ultimate “mommy Tattoo”.
Breastfeeding and getting a Tattoo?
But why isn’t it a good Idea to get a Tattoo while breastfeeding? Mainly, If your tattoo would get infected you maybe would need Antibiotics that don’t go well together with breastfeeding. Some say there is a slightly bigger chance of infection because of a lower immune system and a bit thinner blood. But let’s be honest, I think those last two reasons have as much to do with delivering a baby and recovering from that than breastfeeding. I guess having a tattoo within the first 9 months after having a baby/pregnancy maybe isn’t a good idea either. Anyway, This is What the breastfeeding experts at La Leche League had to say about it.
“I’m Hearing myself say “Michiel, I really think you have to hold my hand””
“Shurley the pain is going to get so much worse. But it wasn’t…
“this is it!?” I asked.”
“I suddenly became really nervous!
There was something I didn’t think of beforehand…
Would this hurt much!?”
The time is now
After 1,5 years of breastfeeding my babies aren’t that dependent on breastfeeding anymore, Its just a nice bonus for all the antibodies and such. But if I would have to skip one week for what reason so ever. She would survive just fine! Besides that, I wasn’t going to let a Tiny little tattoo get infected. A good licensed tattoo shop, healthy lifestyle, Hygiene and common sense are your friends.
So I decided it was time. I sure as hell wasn’t going to wait until I am 38 to do this thing!
It already had waited for ages (7 years). And then last Oktober Michiel and my Mom surprised me for my 34th birthday with a booked appointment at “Le Nou“. The earliest date available was February the 7th. Wich says something about how good she is I guess.
February 7th, 2019
Happy as can be, with my hand-drawn line design perfected over the past 7 years. (being a bit of a neurotic perfectionist about it, but it was done.) I’d never been more ready for this than for anything in my life! Even a pregnancy takes less freaking time than it takes me to get a tiny little tattoo! I mean really!?
Only until the very last moment when a sat down and with the sight of the surprisingly friendly looking tattoo machine I suddenly became really nervous! There was something I didn’t think of beforehand… Would this hurt much!? I had been so busy thinking of the design, artist, timing… and now only seconds to go and my heard was pounding like crazy. I’m Hearing myself say “Michiel, I really think you have to hold my hand”
The sound of the buzzing needle and 3..2..1…
I remember thinking the first 10 seconds, this isn’t IT yet, It can’t be. Shurley the pain is going to get so much worse. But it wasn’t… “this is it!?” I asked. “Yes, that’s it! Its actually get easier as I move towards your wrist!” WOW, What a relief! Feels a bit like sharp scratching. This didn’t hurt at all! It took no more than 20 minutes and than it was all done. Not a drop of blood or wound fluid had spilled. It looked sharp and dry. Even the redness wasn’t so bad. And I never was happier with a birthday gift!
Now 2 days later I still find myself looking at it and being so completely content with it. So happy I had to wait because now I have all 3 names in it. If I hadn’t had to wait until my breastfeeding days where over I would probably have done just the first name and later two separate tattoos with every new baby name. What I like about this one now is that what I thought would be just a cool design turned out to be a timeline. One continuous line, their names all connected. It’s perfect! Everything came together and I’m loving it!
Thanks, Michiel for making the reservation and tanks mom for sponsoring half of it for my B-day, and last but not least thanks to Manon from LeNou Tattoo for doing an awesome job!
And to my three baby girls, Miley, Haley & Quinn, I love you forever, just like this tattoo.
Want to see the end result!? scroll down to see the rest of the photo series.