Oct 06

The story behind my tattoo….

by in Peppa

Tattoos are one of those things that most people have some sort of opinion about. Some see them as art while others view them as an act of rebellion. There are many different views about tattoos and I guess I can’t hold a completely unbiased opinion seeing as how I myself have a tattoo.  This is not a blog to encourage or discourage someone from getting a tattoo. It is not even a blog to try to get people to change their opinions one way or the other. Rather, simply put, this is my story and the reason behind my tattoo.

For those of you who have not seen my tattoo, here is a picture of it (It is a before and after shot due to the fact that I needed to get it fixed which happened today):

 

I waited for a long time to decide exactly what my design would be, five years to be exact. I knew the basic idea of what I wanted but for some reason it wasn’t hitting home. Maybe I am wrong but I reckon God cares about everything about you even down to what you do to your body, which would explain why for 5 years my drawings never felt quite right. It wasn’t until I came out the other side of a very dark time in my life that I was finally able to draw exactly what I wanted as my tattoo.

A lot of people won’t know this but I struggled pretty drastically for quite some time with an eating disorder. I grew up with a mom who was both bulimic and anorexic, meaning the little food she did eat she quickly threw up. In my family we never talked about issues or things that were happening within our family.  So I watched from the time I was little until the day I left home my bio-mom slowly starve herself and deplete her body of any nutrition. As you can imagine I have a pretty warped idea of what healthy eating is and it can be quite a real struggle for me to eat properly and not worry about food or weight.

When I left Australia I was pretty wrapped up in the clutches of anorexia. I felt like I wasn’t measuring up to who or what I was supposed to be. I started trying to fit into the mold of what I thought was perfection. I would obsess about everything I ate and how much exercise I would need to do in order to work it off. I even somehow had it in my head that my curly hair was unacceptable so I would cut it in a way that was short and spiky in the back and straighten my fringe in the front. I was trying to erase any sign of curl because it didn’t fit into what I perceived was beautiful.  A lot of my ideas of beauty came from things I heard while growing up and what others had spoken over me. I finally felt like I was at an age where I could take matters into my own hands and take control. The not so funny thing about eating disorders is that you actually lose control the further you sink into the disease because it takes over you. You then fight harder to take control because you can feel the little control you had slipping from your grasp. Many people are of the opinion that once you struggle with an eating disorder you will never really recover and that you will always struggle with it once the opportunity presents itself. My family (this is my adoptive family…for those who are confused feel free to ask me about it but to put it simply I now have a family of my heart) was of a different opinion, they were convinced that I could break free from the grips of this disease. They started pouring truth from God’s Word into my mind believing that it would begin to reach my heart eventually. I’m not going to lie I was a wreck and I am very stubborn so it took a very long time for my heart to start to receive the truth. I was clutching onto the lies I had believed about myself for so long and it made it difficult for me to understand what truth was.

For many of you, who know me; you know that Psalm 139 is my favorite passage in the Bible. Throughout my struggle with anorexia I kept returning to this passage and wrestling with God about the words within. I had loved this Psalm for a while because of the very intimate images that were displayed throughout it. It was impossible for me to continue believing I was not good enough when I saw God’s heart echoing out of the words of this Psalm. Just have a look at some of the words that captured my heart.

“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
Thank You for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.
 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in Your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed.
 How precious are Your thoughts about me, O God.
They cannot be numbered!
I can’t even count them;
they outnumber the grains of sand!
And when I wake up,
You are still with me!” ~ Psalm 139:13-18

Very slowly I started to allow these words to penetrate my heart. I’m not going to say it was an instant thing that happened but God started to open my heart to the fact that He had made me and thus I was exactly as I was supposed to be. Psalm 139 is very dear to my heart as it is the passage that helped pull me out of my eating disorder.

Another thing you need to know about me is that stars have always been really important and special to me. This is simply because they remind me of how much God loves me. Did you know that God has named each star by name and still He takes a personal interest in each of us? Even though I am so small in comparison to the galaxy, God still sees me and loves me. If that is not mind blowing I don’t know what is! I can stand looking up at the stars and just get lost in the wonder of God.

So what does this all have to do with my tattoo?  For me I need to have a very real reminder of what God has said about me. You see, my tattoo reminds me of what God thinks about and says about me. I never know when I will be attacked with doubt and often times I am caught off guard. I needed a reminder of Truth that I could instantly look at and start battling against the invading thoughts or lies that filled my head. Hence why I got my tattoo, it is an incredibly tactile way for me to remember God’s Word. You may or may not agree with tattoos, but for me it’s just another way to fight the battle of my thoughts. If you get nothing else out of this post I would just encourage you to go look up Psalm 139 and let the words wash over your heart as they so often do for mine.

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One Response to “The story behind my tattoo….”

  1. From Lee:

    Awesome Peppa, you are a lovely young lady whom I care about. Thanks for sharing.

    Posted on 08. Oct, 2012 at 10:14 pm #

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