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Tattoo tales: Silent testament

Jen’s tattoo isn’t one you will see every day. I’m her roommate, and I didn’t see it until a month into school. I casually asked about it one day in fall quarter, not expecting the emotional story behind the body ink.Jen Goldberg ’16 explained that she brainstormed her tattoo idea with one of her friends and designed it during her sophomore year of high school.

“It’s all about the warm and fuzzies,” she began, detailing the origins of her tattoo and explaining how she struggled with depression in high school. Her depression was incredibly taxing, but it was also hard to admit that she needed help. Dealing with her depression was the first time her fiery, southern self had to lean on others.

The tattoo itself features fuzzy hands grasping an anatomically correct heart. Once Jen marries, she is planning to finish off the tattoo with a crown above the heart to resemble a Claddagh ring, the Irish ring that is worn to indicate whether one is single or married. She smiles, telling me not to worry. “I thought this all the way through.” Her future husband, she says, will ultimately be the one that she leans on the most.

Jen got her tattoo two days after her high school graduation to commemorate her battle with depression. It serves as a daily reminder of the people that were there for her during hard times and a reminder that it is acceptable to lean on others for support.