Practicing Patience For a Meaningful Tattoo

Deciding on a Permanent Design Takes Time

By: Marissa Gonzalez

The ohm symbol tattoo represents wisdom. Credit:

CSI student Pablo Pena currently has two tattoos, awaiting a third. He designs them all within five months of receiving his last. 

According to Pena, a five month minimum wait period must materialize before getting each tattoo.

“If the meaning behind the tattoo I designed changes after five months,” said Pena. “I wouldn’t get it.”

Pena got his first tattoo in January at the age of 17. The word, “patience” permanently resides on his left forearm and holds a powerful meaning. 

The meaning behind the word came from a personal struggle he overcame as a child. A reminder of the past and an achievement from the hardships he faced growing up.

Growing up, Pena went through some rough stages in life including depression and impatience. This left him with the mentality that he needed to get things done immediately in order to be fully satisfied. This was when the saying popped into his head, where as everything takes time. 

  Coincidental he got the simple word, “patience” to remind him to take some along with him every step of the way. Every morning Pena wakes up and reminds himself of those harsh times and grows from the experience. This tattoo plays the role of a support system for Pena, whenever he needs that boost of confidence. 

Besides Pena’s delight over his new tattoo, his father thought otherwise. Penas’ father’s initial thought of his tattoo included a kind of destruction to his body. The anger his father held spanned out for two months but ended with an understanding between the two.

 According to the online article titled, Most Parents Are Against Teen Tattoos. Linda Carroll explains, more than 78% of parents in the U.S. would never even consider the fact of their children getting tattooed at any age. 

Over the years, tattoos were believed to negatively impact someone when looking for a job. This has been implanted into the minds of teens through education systems and family talk, but as the generations change and advance the opposite can be proven. 

The article titled, Does Having A Tattoo Affect Getting A Job? A New Study Says Actually, No, by Jr Thorpe explains how tattoos came out as a big thing because they weren’t popular. They were looked at as if they were for rebels or daredevils when in fact now are seen as normalities and traits a person can have. 

“People don’t care whether you have a tattoo showing or not,” said Pena. “You can always cover it up.” 

Pena currently works at the YMCA Youth, as a sports director; which is a high standard job for a 19 year old with two tattoos. There he explains his tattoos aren’t acknowledged as they would be in a professional business attire. 

After Pena’s first tattoo he was inclined and inspired to get another. His inspiration came from his mothers’ tattoo which included the saying of, “Fuck Cancer” on her back. This tattoo holds a lot of meaning in two simple words, therefore left Pena thriving on the idea of more meaning. 

Pena’s second tattoo includes extensive significant meanings. The first element in his tattoo illustrates his grandmother’s zodiac sign; the second represents Mount Everest for his mother’s battle with cancer; the third and fourth present his mothers in connection to his ups and downs; the fifth states, Gods Greater Than Your Highs and Lows; the sixth shows the coordinates of the first house he’s lived in and the last meaning represents his fathers importance. 

While in the midst of designing his third tattoo, Pena uses the meanings of his being. The first being a single lined wolf representing his leadership; the second an ohm symbol representing his wisdom; third a sunset representing a beauty he enjoys; and lastly a semi representing the overcoming of a dark period in his life. 

“I don’t regret any of my tattoos,” said Pena. “They remind me things come when they come.”

Categories: Lifestyles

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