What kind of messages can we send with a flower tattoo?
A few months ago, I helped a friend with the organization of an event. It was a big party and my job was to sit behind a counter and serve people food. I never had that kind of job before, where complete strangers would talk to me to ask for something and leave. During those brief interactions, there was almost no eye contact and, of course, no conversation. For them, I was an anonymous face. Throughout the day, I felt the egotistical impulse to let them know that I wasn’t just a random person. I felt the need to distinguish myself from everybody else by screaming ,“I’m interesting! I speak two and a half languages and I read complicated books!” or something like that. I was experiencing, I think, what some people call status anxiety. And I suddenly understood why a lot of people focus on their appearance to express who they are and what they’re like.
If we don’t have the opportunity to speak or the time to express our ideas and personality, we still want to show it without words and as quickly as possible. So we buy the clothes that make us feel unique, we get a haircut, we buy shoes, or we get a tattoo. It comes from the need to connect with others, especially like-minded people. That's why we want potential friends or lovers to recognize us amid a crowd. Then, you might be wondering, how can a tattoo of something as simple as a flower help with that? Well, flowers are far more meaningful than they seem. For instance, in the Victorian era, they were the favorite means for women to send encoded messages to their lovers, as well as their enemies. Then, what can you say with a flower tattoo?
While the meaning of flowers has changed throughout history, and it also varies according to different societies, many have associated them with death. Of course, your tattoo doesn't have to be that morbid (well, it can be, if that's what you want), but a dead flower can remind you and others that you don't see death as something bad, but as an enhancer of life. It can express that you're not afraid of looking at the dark side of life, because by doing so you can return to the light, wiser than before.
You can also adopt a completely different approach and get a tattoo of a blooming flower, a symbol of gratitude towards life and appreciation of the present moment and its fruitfulness. You don't wait for inspiration, but you grasp it by recognizing the beauty that's in front of you. Also you can get a tattoo of a young flower that hasn’t flourished yet, as a way to depict the processes in your life and help you remember that you’ve grown before and you’ll keep growing even more in the future.
You don't have to get a big, detailed tattoo with intense colors and complexity to show who you are. It's just a matter of finding the design that inspires you and reminds you that you can make a meaningful connection, even in those moments when you feel like an anonyous face amid a crowd.