I started tattooing, little by little, slowly but surely. My very first time, I was an emotional wreck. I felt so unprepared, and, for a moment, everything that I’ve worked for felt irrelevant and worthless. I don’t mean to be grim here but creating time to read, and reflecting over, obituaries helped me to get over that slump. Thinking about death, and checking in with my own deathbed, triggered a sense of guilt for not making the most of every moment in life. It’s a weird thing to simultaneously live as if there is no tomorrow and live as if there will be a thousand tomorrows; but that’s exactly how my apprenticeship feels for me.
So what have I learned so far? “A man receives only what he is ready to receive… We hear and apprehend only what we already half know.” I learned to get comfortable with uncertainty. My anxiety is still there but I’m going to try, as best as I can, to stay in one moment at a time, just as it is.
From now on, I will post small updates like this one every day. I don’t want to call it a diary, rather documenting my process to keep track of where I have been, where I am, and where I am headed. Process equals progress.