Express Yourself

Posted February 28, 2010

Express Yourself

What is it about turning fifty that drives us to find new ways of revealing our ‘true self’?

As my husband approached his fiftieth birthday he became utterly obsessed with getting a tattoo. “I feel I need to put my mark on life…on me,” he explained. “Don’t worry, it will be discreet,” he added as he saw my jaw drop to the floor.

This was a complete non-starter as far as I was concerned. For one thing, I hate tattoos with a passion. And it was obvious that he was in the throes of a mid-life crisis so there was clearly no telling what the devil he would opt for. “No,” I said firmly. “But I need to express myself,” he pleaded. I suggested he stick with his hobby, photography – plenty of room for expression there.

This obsession showed no signs of abating and was the source of angry exchanges between us for well over a year. Friends and family found this all highly entertaining and seemed to relish coming up with more and more outlandish ideas. My best friend suggested a reclining Buddha and even provided a detailed sketch. How could she? My nieces suggested a fire-breathing dragon that could wrap around his back. “Go on,” they said, “it will be really cool”. He was seriously considering this. I threatened to leave him.

Anyway, it all got sorted in the end. He eventually dropped the tattoo idea and opted for psychology instead. Sorry…. what? I know, I know! There doesn’t seem to be any obvious connection between these two ideas but hey, it’s not for me to judge. We’re now three years into his part time Open University course which he loves and he hasn’t mentioned tattoos since. If friends or family ever suggest a tattoo of Freud, I’ll never speak to them again!

 

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