Down By The River


This is my daughter Lil. We went to Edisford Bridge in Clitheroe and the kids paddled in the river and skimmed stones. Charlie barked at rocks for a couple of hours. We drank tea in polystyrene cups and talked about whatever came into our heads. My mother and father-in-law came too, and both having just recovered from major surgery they thoroughly enjoyed the sunshine.

This morning my friend Mark gave me a beautiful tattoo of a rose.


It’s a cover-up of a tattoo I had aged seventeen. I had the original done on a whim and hated it. I adore the new work. Mark is at Inkspirations…  and is a brilliantly talented artist.

I realised today it has taken me twenty years to have the confidence to show my arms in public, as I have many self-harm scars. In fact, I had my back exposed for the tattoo and people saw my body and I didn’t mind, though years ago I couldn’t have done it. Until recently I didn’t want anyone to see me or touch me. I think I just realised that it doesn’t matter what people think about me or how I look. I’m pleased I don’t have to hide my tattoo anymore and feel proud of the work Mark has done. I don’t mind if people stare at my arms, it doesn’t bother me, and I’m more tactile than I used to be. I guess I’m just going soft.

Sometimes I feel sad it’s taken me so long to accept myself and begin to feel comfortable in my own skin and my own body, but I will embrace the confidence I’ve found. None of us have any reason to be ashamed of our bodies. Our bodies are beautiful, magical, special and finite. I want to live now, as long as I possibly can. I’m hoping by keeping this blog I might be able to trace my thoughts on the bad days back to these better moments.



3 thoughts on “Down By The River

  1. Pingback: Down By The River | Writing & Reading | Sc...

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