Historical Post: Unconditional Love is So Rare - Feb 7, 2018

Unconditional Love is So Rare

February 7, 2016 by julieannhowe

📷This week has been full of turbulent emotion for me.  I found out that someone I love dearly doesn’t share the same form of dedication as a friend.   That’s pretty hard to swallow when you would seriously do anything for them, but a disagreement and speaking your mind has them running for the hills.   I guess in the same light, I took time to commemorate a dear friend who did share that dedication and unconditional love for me, but has left this world to conquer new ones and await our arrival.  I also welcomed back a friend after many years away and was reminded of unconditional love that still exists in my life without those who don’t want to be here.


Despite the pain and heartache I’ve been feeling, I have to try to remember that each of us chooses our course, and faces our own answers.  I know that how I am feeling is somewhat shared with how he might be, and that at least in the close future, my outcomes are much brighter and filled with less pain.


I was also reminded that the love of my children is truly something that I can never forget I have.  They don’t care what a dork or asshole I can be at times, they still look at me admiringly and allow me to be who I am.  Some days, when I sit and hope for love in my life, I forget how much of it I truly have.


This tattoo that I got is my way of saying Emily will live in my heart forever.  She was truly one of the brightest, most free souls I have ever known.  She was loud, borderline obnoxious, hilarious, and a real pleasure.  She spoke her mind, and never pulled her punches.  She was thoughtful, compassionate, and I’ll never forget some of our deep conversations on love and life.  When I found out she was gone by her own hand, I felt in so many ways that I wasn’t there enough for her.  Three and a half years later, I set vowing to always be there for my friends, like no other person will ever be there in their life, their rock, their pillar, their go to, for anything and everything.  Some people don’t want that, but nonetheless, I will be here waiting.


This rose symbolizes the love in her heart.  I saw it so many times, felt it in her words, in her hugs, and in her love of her family, especially her sister, Rose.  I wanted to represent the Semi Colon Project, because it is about suicide awareness and the work that they do in order to help people understand the struggles of mental illness and depression.   This combination of Rose with the water drop semi colon was a brilliant and beautiful idea by my tattoo artist Lanea.  She did a stunning job, and I couldn’t be more proud of the brilliance and dramatic features of this tattoo…. it truly exemplifies her largeness of life.


As my weekend has come to an end, I welcomed back into my life, while she never left, she was farther away, an old friend who shares my zany and completely unconventional personality.  A woman who is strong, but admitted a moment of weakness and did what the strongest women do, she asked for help.  She stepped back into my life in a whirlwind and I’ve been so happy to be here and do what needs to be done to ensure her health and well being.   Already, after years apart, I realize nothing has changed, we are both still bat-shit crazy, and fit like pieces of a puzzle, a weird 3-D one of something seriously inappropriate, but none the less, we fit.


So as my weeks of hurt continue, I will wrap myself in baby slobber, laughter, inappropriate conversation, and share what real friendship is meant to be. Thank you life for these beautiful gifts. I am eternally grateful.


Please visit Project Semicolon for more information.


If you live in the Portland Metro area, and like my Tattoo work, please visit Lanea Apple on Facebook for detail and appointment setting.

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