Rima and I have multiple tattoos. These are stories we've been collecting over the years. For me personally, tattoos are a form of creativity that capture a certain mindset and attitude I was in when I received it. All of mine are from different stages of my life and from different states. I have gotten a tattoo in every city I've lived in, a living story map on my skin if you will. To be honest I prefer some more than others, but isn't that was life is? Moments and stories some better than others. No, I don't regret getting any of my tattoos. No, I wouldn't do them over again because each one was a part of a learning lesson and a piece of who I was three, five, ten years ago. We are only on the planet and breathing for who know how long. Some people are not all about tattoos and I respect that, do your thing bro, do your thing. As long as we are all happy, who cares?! Rima has some pretty large tattoos on her skin. For her tattoos are a reflection of her life. Inspirations that mean things to her. Her love for orchids, having CF and collecting roses on her back. Each one hold something special to her from her moving through life.
We have one pretty similar tattoo, it is a graphic I designed back in college. A rose with roots sprouting from the bottom, like lungs. It will be our Lung Story Short logo (I'm currently making a few adjustments). It's pretty rad that something I created in my early 20's still resinates with the both of us deeply. Rima and I've been thinking about getting tattoos here in Colorado for a couple months. After the transplant she won't be able to get them ever again. This is because your antibodies and antigens can change and effect the anti-rejection drugs and her new lungs. Not taking that chance so instead we decided to get them before mid-summer. Rima wanted to get her two CF mutations. DeltaF508 and R553X. All CF patients have two mutations the first DeltaF508 is the most common, some have two of this. R553X is a less common and more rare one. Of course Rima has to be a special case!
So after spitballing some ideas around we decided to get matching tattoos with the Rocky Mountains in the middle. We landed on the mountains for a few reasons. 1. Colorado is where we were reconnected with living in the sample place again. 2. We both adore the mountains. 3. The peaks and falls of the landscape perfectly represent the daily struggle of living with CF. The mutations would be on either side of the range. We agreed to have them on our inner biceps for me on my right and Rima on her left. We found a good tattoo shop not far from home and made the appointments. Long story short (haha, I've been wanting to use that in a sentence!) we had to get the tattoos over the course of two nights. Rima on the first and me on the second. Our artist was very talented and was able to perfectly tattoo the mutations on our arms. We decided on a difficult font (not on purpose) and the size was small. But he was confident and executed them both on point.
We're extremely pleased with the results and our choice of design. This is another story we are adding to our skin. One that will follow us to Minnesota, through the transplant, the recovery and post transplant life. This will be a reminder (not that we need it) that we are in this together. On our darkest days Rima or I can glance over and from the corner of our eyes, be reminded that we have another human being who would knock down doors, ask the hard questions, and do the impossible for us. That my friends is some powerful stuff and I'm lucky enough to have a twinning tattoo with one of the worlds coolest humans. I call that a perfect home run.