………….I love my body ink, I have two full sleeves and am in the process of getting more done and designed all the time. My first tattoo as that teenage rebel was predictably for my age some chinese symbols, and ever since getting my first one I’ve had a bit of an addiction to them. I slowly over time added more predictable ones as I liked being tattooed but really didn’t know what I wanted. Fortunately I moved in with my now wife and she lived near a lady that had some of the best ink I’ve seen, as did her partner. As I got to know them I was introduced to their artist and haven’t looked back.

I was at an age where I finally knew what I wanted and have started to turn my body into a sketchbook. I have my family motto and loads of skulls and flames on one arm, with roman numerals showing the date of my wedding, the initials of my best mate who was taken far too young and on the 10th anniversary of his passing I had his initials and dates of his life added with a skull. I have some random tribal that I designed that looks a bit like a scorpion. This tattooing started in earnest after my car accident and I found that being tattooed was the one time I could sit and chat for hours without shuffling and moving and where for once my pain wasn’t the first thing I thought of. It helps that I get on well with my tattooist and that we have a good laugh. He spoke to me about the tattooing being part of pain diversion. I was a little unsure what he meant and he explained that the tattooing was sending different impulses to my brain and pain receptors to what I am normally used too. This was possibly the best sales pitch ever or there was some real truth in what Mark said. I did some reading and I go with the latter.

There are only two issues with this;

  1. Good work isn’t cheap, and if you are going to mark yourself for life you want to make sure it is quality work.
  2. My wife doesn’t like tattoos

The second one you’d think for some would be a no brainer and we have had several discussions with people who cannot understand why my wife allows me to do it! People cannot get their heads round the fact that just as I would never tell my wife what to wear or how to have her hair cut etc, she would never say no to me having ink. I guess it is being unique individuals within a couple that make us work!

My left forearm is covered with a steam punk inspired bionic ripped arm with coils, wires, cogs, suspension rods etc. My upper arm has a saying from a series of books that myself and my father in law read, and translated to English it means Fate is Inexorable which seems quite apt for me. It also has a skull with my LG’s 20 week scan photo incorporated in to it (I will try and get some photos uploaded at some point), along with numerous other skulls, flames, my daughters date of birth in roman numerals and another tattoo I designed that has mine, my wife’s and our sons initials incorporated.

Having run out of room on my arms we moved on to my back. This was going to be one of the best tests for the pain diversion, since my accident I have not been able to have anyone touch large areas of my back without severe reaction. Making me sick, flinch and spasm. So to go with the tattooing was a big risk. I have a major piece planned and that is to turn my back into one big skull. The skull is to be made up of the one passion I have outside of my family and friends Star Wars. So following in my love of star wars the skull when you move closer will be made up of other images. The eye sockets are two pictures of Darth Vader one a portrait of him just after he has been unmasked by Luke and the other a skull/Vader combination. The nose hole consists of Vader in his mask, and the plans are to have rows of stormtroopers making up the teeth. Unfortunately the first issue has become the latest problem. It is the first thing on my bucket list were we to win the lottery.

As a few hours pain relief (and it really is only a short term rest) followed by a good nights sleep it is by far and away the best form of pain diversion I have tried. Give me a few hours with Mark ahead of all the other alternatives I have tried (that’s not to say some don’t help just that my preferred choice would be ink) such as Massage, Accupuncture, Chiropractor, Physio you name it. A close second is my hot tub but once again this is not a cheap alternative. If only the NHS could prescribe Ink and Hot Tubs, maybe that should be my next campaign.

DSC_2963 DSC_2961 SAM_0588

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