The Stories Our Tattoos Tell

By Aaliyah Moore

Photo By @crfpics

Any time I have ever asked someone about a tattoo that they have, they have always had a story or meaning attached to it. For a lot of people, tattoos are a unique form of expression that reflect their personality or beliefs. I have a few tattoos myself, and each one of them means something different to me. I recently added another one, and the meaning behind it speaks to where I am in my life right now.

My newest tattoo is a series of mountain peaks. For me, the mountains symbolize a lot. On one hand, the mountains symbolize constantly moving upward. There’s a saying that goes, “it’s only up from here,” and that’s the mentality I’ve been trying to maintain. After a season of valleys in this year in particular, it has been imperative to remind myself that elevation is near, as long I don’t stop climbing. While this season has been marked by a few challenging obstacles, I have felt invincible, and have also developed perseverance and mental strength that I don’t think I would have had it not been for the mountains I’ve been forced to climb here recently.

My mountain tattoo also symbolizes being secluded, isolated, and at a hard place to reach. In this season of what feels like elevation, I recognize that I can’t take everyone with me. A quote that often resonates with me is,

Everybody can’t go where God is taking you. Thank God for all the people who left you. They had to go. They couldn’t handle your elevation.

What’s hard about leaving people behind is that most times, these are people we’ve been close to for years, and for some of us, this can even be people in our families. Life, however, has a way of evolving in a way to where even the people closest to us cannot help us get to our next levels, and we have to be okay with that.

All in the Climb

Years ago, Miley Cyrus released a song entitled, “The Climb.” As a 12-year old Hannah Montana fanatic, I don’t think I really understood the message behind the lyrics. Today, I realize that the song spoke a real word, and closely aligns with the meaning of my tattoo. In the song Miley said,

There’s always gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be an uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose
Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb
.

And that’s all so true. Life is going to always present us with a series of mountains. That’s just a part of it. It’s just important to remember that each time we climb another one, it makes us stronger, and puts us closer and closer to the top.

So maybe tattoos aren’t your thing? I get it, they aren’t for everybody. I still think tattoos are a great form of expression through art, and another way to tell our stories.

Aaliyah Moore is a contributing writer for the Pedestal Project, LLC.

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