Tattoos are far less taboo today than any other time in modern society. It’s not just young or impulsive people choosing to permanently mark their bodies. Tattoos are the way people from all social levels and incomes commemorate important trials or accomplishments in their lives.
One of the most popular types of tattoo is honoring the addition of children to the family. Using a tattoo to symbolize or represent children is nothing new. In fact, it is one of the safest tattoos to get; a tattoo is permanent, and children are a permanent part of the family.
You might divorce your spouse, but parents don’t divorce their children. Even in the case of tragedy, which is sadly a common inspiration for getting a tattoo honoring a child, the parent doesn’t want to forget the child lived.
There are many popular ways to honor a child by a tattoo. The most obvious way is by tattooing their initials or full name somewhere on the body. More ambitious tattoo artists can even tattoo a portrait of the child onto a body area.
Rap artist Eminem is often photographed with his tattoo of his daughter’s face on his right upper arm. Some parents want a less literal tattoo, something more symbolic of their child. Here are more unique ways to ink a tattoo in honor of your child:
1. Consider a time or other scientific notationThe exact time of birth, and birth stats such as weight and length could be significant to the parent, as it is the exact moment life changed forever. Other parents may want to note the location of birth, especially adoptive parents. For example, Angelina Jolie is known for her tattoos of the longitude and latitude for each of her children’s birthplaces on her arm.
2. Use a cultural notation or languageMany families have heritages they are proud of, and using symbols and language from this heritage is very appropriate to honor children in the family. For example, Jewish families may wish to use Hebrew letters for their children’s initials, or get a tattoo of the child’s Hebrew name. Or, a woman with Irish roots could use a Celtic heart symbol for motherhood.
3. Allow children to choose their symbolIf children are old enough, and mature, parents could let the child choose the symbol. For example, a son heavily involved with baseball could choose a catcher’s mitt or mask as his symbol for his father’s or mother’s tattoo.
Even if the child changes interests, a parent may still wish to have a reminder of special memories from the time the child was interested in the tattoo symbolized activity. Best bets are to stay broad, such as using music notes to symbolize a child playing an instrument, just in case he or she changes instruments.
4. The feather tattoo to honor your lossThis tattoo idea is all about honoring a baby you lost. It’s hard and sometimes impossible to cope with the death of a child. My friend got the feather tattoo last year.
She miscarried and couldn’t get over this. She wanted to do something to honor her unborn baby. She chose the feather after she read Hope is the thing with feathers by Emily Dickinson. Probably it’s difficult for me to understand her choice, because I’ve never lost a child, but I do remember her grief every time I see her tattoo.
5. The birth flower tattooIf you have a baby girl, you can honor her by getting the birth flower tattoo. If she was born in June, for example, opt for the rose – June’s birth flower.
You can also pick your child’s favorite flower or ask her what flower you should choose to honor her. Sure, it’s not for girls only. If you have a baby boy, this tattoo idea is a fabulous option too.
6. Your child’s drawingsIt doesn’t matter whether your child is good at drawing or not, it’s a great idea for a tattoo. While most parents cover their walls in their children’s drawings, you can go ahead and get a tattoo that will always remind you of how gifted your child is.
7. Child’s portraitMy cousin got a tattoo of his daughter’s portrait a few years ago when Jessica was about 5 month old. His tattoo is so cute and catchy that everyone notices he is already a dad who loves his daughter and is not afraid to show it. As Jess grows older, she becomes more and more proud of having such a great daddy.
When choosing a tattoo to symbolize children, the best results come from the most personalized designs. Many customers wait until they get to the tattoo parlor and pick out a design from the wall, such as a stock heart with a banner. A better tattoo experience includes researching the personal design in advance.
However, you should always talk to the tattoo artist about the design before getting the tattoo. The tattoo artist’s experience can help with special details, or warn against a particular body location for the size of the design.
A parent using a tattoo to honor the addition of a child to the family is not alone. This is one of the most popular reasons for getting a tattoo.
Parents should carefully consider the symbols that mean the most to them about their children, and visit an experienced tattoo artist to discuss the final design. Getting your tattoo artist on board about the design is important to make sure the body art looks amazing.