“It is a personal decision to get a tattoo and no one is entitled to make that decision but you,” said Lizbeth Torres, a junior at the University of Rhode Island. 

Lizbeth Torres shares her tattoo representing the love she has for her mother.

Torres’ tattoo is of a red rose followed by the stem spelling out the word amour which means love in French. The history behind her tattoo comes from the deep love she has for her mother. Torres’ mother goes by the name of Rosaila which gives her tattoo a sentimental connection. She said that she’s shared many different experiences with her mother and their relationship and love grows more with the time they spend together. 

“My mom came with me to get it done,” Torres said. “She knew why I was getting it.” 

Her session was about 30 minutes long and she got it this past summer at 20 years old. During her session, the level of pain was not as bad as she expected it to be. The most painful part was when the stem was drawn in but overall she was able to handle it pretty well.  

Torres believes that getting a tattoo is a personal choice. 

“I’m not against any tattoos and if it means something to you then just get it,” Torres said. “A tattoo can mean something more than just a drawing on your body. It has deep meaning to who you are and something precise in your life.”

Torres plans on getting more tattoos in the future. She always thought about getting a butterfly tattoo because of what they symbolize to her and her mother. To Torres, butterflies signify a person pushing through their limits and doing what it takes to become the best version of yourself, no matter what you are going through. 

Tucker Snow Girard, a junior at URI, said that his tattoo is in regards to his military background when he joined the air force about two years ago, in addition to a deep representation of his character. The tattoo he shared represents the alchemy symbol for air which has strong ties with his zodiac sign and his role in the air force. It symbolizes purity, the breath of life and the soul. 

Tucker Snow Girard shares his tattoo which represents his Air Force military background.

“Starting a new beginning and the transition from civilian life to military life helped me learn a lot of life lessons,” Snow Girard said. “Everyone says [my tattoo] looks like the Harry Potter symbol.” 

However, his role in the air force, the people he’s met and his character are the foundations on what represents the personal meaning behind his tattoo. 

Snow Girard is open with the fact of having tattoos in visible places because he uses it as a way to meet new people and to talk about the stories behind his own and other people’s tattoos. He is also aware of the level of professionalism that he wants to maintain for his future. Snow Girard plans on getting more tattoos possibly in places that are visible as well as places that aren’t visible. 

He was 19 years old when got his first tattoo done and the session was about 15 minutes long. The level of pain didn’t affect him at all and Snow Girard was accompanied by a friend from his unit who was also getting a tattoo as well. 

Snow Girard has close friends and loved ones who have tattoos. They all share a deep sentimental meaning that no one would be able to understand. 

“I feel like most people get them because it has a meaning behind it,” said Snow Girard.