Stefani's most-fantastical-reads book montage

Crooked Kingdom
Six of Crows
Yellow Brick War
The Wicked Will Rise
Charm & Strange
Their Fractured Light
These Broken Stars
Big Little Lies
I'll Be There
Red Queen

Stefani's favorite books »

Sunday, April 7, 2013


Hope anchors the soul.
Refuse to sink.

Smooth seas never made a skilled sailor.

Cast your anchors on God, that anchor holds.

Hold fast like an anchor in the storm; we will not be moved.

The image of an anchor conjures up so many images for me. Some of them are memories from my childhood - boating with my parents, dropping the anchor for the night and having to have faith that it would hold while we slept. Others are concepts, ideas... security, faith, hope, and strength. 
When I began toying with the idea of a new tattoo, I wanted to choose something that had great meaning to me. I believe that tattoos should be more than just an artistic addition to a person's body - I believe that they should speak to that person's character, beliefs, or passions. This was to by my third tattoo, and certainly not my last. My first I got shortly after turning 18. I was young, getting ready to start my senior year, and had my whole life ahead of me after a few dark years throughout middle school. I selected a beautiful blue and green butterfly and, although I hate that shortly thereafter the image became trendy and even cliche, I believed then and still do today that that image symbolized rebirth and change - both things that I desperately needed to believe in as I moved toward adulthood. It was my reminder that I had a fresh start, a new beginning and I could be a new, beautiful person - despite my past. My second tattoo came a year after I gave birth to Addison (you can read about it here). My connection to her was - and is - so powerful that I felt like I needed some sort of physical representation of our bond on my body, something that lasted beyond pregnancy. I had her name written in script on my left foot and the symbol for the eternal bond between mother and daughter next to it. This summer, I will have an identical tattoo done for my son on my right foot - with some small modifications to the image. Seeing Addison's name there has meant a lot of different things to me - some days it's to remind me to 'keep walking' this path and push forward to make a better life for my kids, others it's to remind me that even when she's being totally bonkers, I love her more than the breath in my lungs. Adding Cohen's name to my body completes the art that I want to have done - for now. {Only those of you with tattoos will understand that...}
So why did I select an anchor then? I'm sure that's what a lot of people are going to ask, and it's a fair enough question. With the limitless supply of images available, why this one in particular? There are many reasons, and I'll do my best to explain them here. 
  1. My dad. There are many images that I could have found to represent my father but the one that resonates most with me has to do with our time on and around the water. From itty bitty on, I was raised on and around boats, playing on beaches, and fishing, crabbing, clam digging, and falling of docks. Our summers revolved around two major trips - one to Mt. Rainier and one boating trip. My dad always was on the bridge - in smooth seas and in treacherous waters. He was always calm, always in charge. Even when our boat took on water and nearly sank when I was very young, I don't remember panic - I remember my dad doing what was needed to keep us safe and get us off the boat. I remember being in awe as we were surrounded by a pod of killer whales on a fishing trip in the San Juan Islands and being amazed by what the sea could hold. My thoughts and memories of the ocean go hand in hand with my thoughts and memories of my childhood and my family. The heart in the base of the anchor symbolizes my family.
  2. Hope. Originally, I was going to have the text, "hope anchors the soul" inscribed under the anchor but the text that I wanted would have had to be too large for my scrawny little arm. But the idea of hope is still the most important part of this tattoo. There are many things in this world that I could live without {not by choices... but still}. I could live without money, without love, and even without my family - as long as I had the hope that those things would come back to me. Without hope - whether it's for a better futures for my children, for my marriage to come out of a dark place, for my dad to kick cancer's ass once and for all - without the hope for those things, I would have nothing. I'd be lost. It's the hope that things can and will get better, that keeps me moving forward even when the odds are against me. The anchor itself symbolizes hope.
  3. Finally, this tattoo symbolizes faith. I'm not usually one to prattle on about God and religion. I believe that each person needs to come to their own conclusion about their faith and do what is right to them. I don't like to be told how to 'do religion properly' and I won't insult anyone by pretending I have it right or figured out by any sense of my imagination. However, I have finally found myself back in church and my faith in God has been renewed. The anchor symbolizes this faith in God. It reminds me that I have to anchor myself to God and have faith that the anchor will hold - just as I did as a child falling asleep on the boat in uncertain seas. 
So, why did I get this tattoo? That's easy - because it reminds me to have faith, to hold to the things that matter, and to continue to hope no matter what life throws in my path. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm not a tattoo girl, but I love yours. And I loved meeting you & seeing your tattoo match the one at the pulpit! What a great meaning behind it!


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