Although once again a subject inspired by my tattoo clients, I believe it applies to all walks of life and types of people. It’s quite often a topic I discuss with my friends, so I’d like to write about it in my blog. The contents of the post are entirely open to discussion and your own examples from life.
When designing a tattoo for a client, it’s common to discuss the idea for it – where and how it came to be, its inspirations, opinions of friends, relatives, loved ones. It’s the latter that I take the most interest in since it gives me a general idea of how Estonian society is changing its views on tattoos (it’s been improving, for real!). Oftentimes there are ridiculous explanations for the answers I get. I’ve been told that getting a tattoo is nothing but scribbling on your body, ruining it, and is just generally a bad idea. Yeah, whatever, same old, same old. What really grinds my gears is when people say they find tattoos pointless, silly, childish, the epicentre of a mid-life crisis or a way to satisfy your attention deficiency. It’s the holders and proud sharers of these opinions that I would dare to call childISH, and on the contrary, owners of fun and precious tattoos childLIKE.
Let me explain my definitions for these two words: childish is an adjective for someone who does not think before they speak nor take responsibility for their actions, whereas childlike describes someone that wishes and feels that their life should contain creativity, excitement and is open to new challenges. The terms themselves imply that these qualities are most common in children. Us as adults have the chance to make a choice – which personality traits do we wish to feed? Each person has both childish and childlike traits, the difference lies only in how we balance them. I’ve noticed especially in Estonians the desire to push down their childlike side and hold onto bitter childishness.
This concept does not only entail tattoos, but all aspects of life. I personally find that I myself am quite childlike: I draw a lot (duh), I love colourful clothes and wigs, I build aesthetically prominent yet unpractical motorised vehicles, among a hundred other hobbies. I often get asked why I need to spend my time on these pointless and impractical things. Fake job, fake hair, useless cars. Creativity and fantasy almost seem a plague to stay far away from and outroot from society.
Whining and criticising is always easier than working to revive the fun and colourful character in you that’s been repressed and forgotten. Every human should find a hobby or other creative outlet to destress daily. People are not designed to always work and handle constant pressure. Rediscover games, colours and laughter in your life.
Which are your childlike qualities and activities that you love?