Hello hello. What accounts for the radio silence is that these last couple of weeks we've been packing for our move to Italy. In this spare moment, I wanted to share Leah's story, and my most recent Gratitude Giveaway. Leah works in hospice which, to my mind, is like the work of angels on earth. And so, here is her tattoo story: 

I have been privileged to work in hospice for the last 5 years.  Whenever I mention that people always say “That must be so hard, working with people who are dying.”  In reality, it is an honor to do my imperfect best to help people at this stage in their life.  It seems to me that death is like life, amplified.  It can be sad, graceful, beautiful, messy, transcendental and mundane, all at the same time.  Seeing people in this stage makes me aware of the finite nature of my own life, and that I need to strive to make it the best that I am able.

My hope with this tattoo is to keep several ideas central in my heart.  First, the life I live is foremost under my control; a positive person lives in a positive world.  Second, the more love I give, the more love I get, in my life and at the end of my life.  Third, those things that I dislike most in others are the things I dislike most in myself.  So better to try to acknowledge and change that in myself than focus that negativity toward others.

Thanks to Cody Swigert at Temple Décor and Marianne Wiest Photography in Kalispell, Montana and to Leah for sharing her story and the final product!

As I reminder: I give away one expression of gratitude every month to a client whose story I find especially moving: commemorating a loved one, an act of kindness, a gift, etc. Email me with your story. And all the gallerty of tattoo photos can be found here