Lately, I have been feeling really insecure about my huge half-sleeve tattoo. I guess that means I’m not as cool or cutting-edge as I’d like to think I am.

When I got it in spring 2009, yes I was a “mature” woman of 33, but I was also not in the best place. I was somewhat checked out and drinking a lot. I was in a very weird relationship with this guy I was completely in love with but who didn’t love me - he just wanted to do activist work together. It was all very torturous and strange and I’m glad that I’m in a more evolved place this year.

So I got this tattoo - and I do love it. It is of a Kwan Yin with a child, and is meant to symbolize compassion, wisdom, motherhood, the Divine Feminine. It’s beautiful - truly a work of art.

Yet…I can’t help but wonder - how many wonderful men will I scare off with this tattoo?

Not that I am looking to date some ultra-conservative guy…I am looking to meet someone who is a bit offbeat like me. But also someone stable, sane, responsible. Probably not a tattooed, pierced twenty-something (no offense to tattooed, pierced twenty-somethings).

Not that I am even dating right now (my year of no-dating/celibacy ends in 4 months)…but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t thinking about it at all.

I keep wondering how many guys would be ashamed to take me and my big-ass tattoo home to mama. Maybe they will write me off as a wild party girl, when they are looking for a good girl. Ironically, I am a VERY good girl these days - I don’t even drink! I’m the most responsible I’ve ever been in my life.

When I find myself overly obsessing about the tattoo, I have to remember to stop future-trippin’ and come back to the present. None of this is happening now. I am not dating right now, and I am OK just as I am. I don’t need to worry one iota about what some imaginary guy I haven’t even met yet - nor am even interested in meeting at this time - will think of my tattoo. I have to remember to embody the energy of the tattoo on my skin - Ms. Kwan Yin herself - and to love myself unconditionally.

Truth be told, I’m pretty scared of getting back into the dating game. Sure, I still have four months until my year of no-dating is over, but I am getting pretty comfortable with the certainty and predictability of it. There is no rejection here…no flaky guys standing me up or canceling at the last minute. No magical first dates followed up by an email a few days (or weeks later): I had a great time with you, but I’m not ready to date someone with kids. No wild, passionate romances that fizzle out in a few weeks, for no discernible reason. If I spend a Friday night alone, it’s not because I can’t get a date, it’s because I choose not to. It’s been calm, it’s been comforting…it’s been nurturing. And not nearly as boring as I thought it would be.

Yet I know that life is nothing without taking risks…and in about four months I’ll jump back into the dating fray once again. I try to hold my head up high and have faith that someday my path will cross with the right man at the right time who will love me, love my child, and love my tattoo.