Welcome back to another installment in our new series – I’m A Mom With Tattoos. In case you have missed the last couple, don’t forget to check them out here.
Today we’re welcoming another tattooed mom to our fold, join me in saying hello to the arty Micaela!
A quick summary of who you are: My name is Micaela Angelica Serena van den Berg (a mouthful I know) I am 28 and I am the art teacher at Sea Point primary school in Cape Town. I am married to my sarcastic and quirky husband Jason and we have one deliciously cute and vocal 8 month old girl.
Tell us a bit more about yourself, what do you enjoy doing? Describing oneself is always tricky. I love reading. I love making things. People say I’m an artist, and that’s true. I love to create things in almost any way I can! I sew, paint, draw, sculpt, draw, write, bake, cook, and always have my hands busy. I usually have at least 6 projects going at once and am reading at least two books at a time. Even though I don’t like being idle, sometimes I still like to take a bath and do nothing for a a bit, when I can get a chance. My passion in life is teaching however, so I am lucky to have been able to teach something I enjoy doing!
If you work, tell us a bit more about your working environment – are you regularly in contact with new “clients/public”. I teach at a primary school. Like any work place it has its challenges, but I love it. My school is lovely, energetic, humorous and relaxed. I see children all day and if they comment on my tattoos it’s to say ‘I like your tattoo miss!’ Or ‘did that hurt?’ To which I say, ‘yes. Yes it did.’
Tell us a bit about your tattoos, what they are, why you have them, where they are located: I have two tattoos, one on my back and one on my foot.
The one on my back is a Celtic cat design. It was my first and I got it when I was 24 to commemorate the next phase of my life. I had just finished art college and had moved to a new city to be an au pair, which was frightening and scary. When it didn’t work out I was left stranded, but a friend (now my husband) insisted I stay with him instead of move back home. I got it to show myself that I had reached a milestone in my life, making my first real gown up decisions.
My second tattoos is one my foot, and I got it at 26. It’s my own design, and I got it to symbolize my husband, and our relationship. He always called me his flower, his daisy. So I got something that meant him to me, just before our wedding 🙂 looked great in the wedding photos. And yes, it hurt. It hurt so much I chose to have an epidural when I gave birth cos I didn’t want to experience that pain again lol. That’s the one I tell the kids about. It’s not that I’m downing tattoos, but they should know that it’s not the same as a stick on.
Which tattoo is your favourite and why? I think my favorite tattoo is the one on my back. I hardly ever see it so I can’t get tired of it or look at ways I might have changed it (my artist mind always wants to add things but I’m too scared to) also, it has a lot of potential to become something more. More colour, more details, more design. Or it can stay the way it is and look right. A good tattoo is one you never get bored of.
Do you plan on getting more? I definitely want more tattoos, but I believe that it should be something meaningful. Both my tattoos jumped out at me, and I knew without a doubt they were exactly what I wanted and I wouldn’t regret them no matter how many years pass. I want all my tattoos to be that way, not just something I get cos I got bored one day. They should all be significant.
How do your family and friends feel about your tattoo(s)? I am lucky to have a family that doesn’t judge regarding tattoos, and even have some of their own! And if my friends don’t have one yet, they are planning on it. Very open minded and modern people lol.
What is the general reaction that “the Public” have towards your tattoos? Have you run into any negativity or adversity because of them? I can’t say I’ve ever had a really negative reaction to my tattoos. Some jobs I’ve had have asked me to cover up but other than that, people just accept it and move on. The reactions I’ve had are more positive. People ask what they are, where I got them, and even compliment me. The weirdest reaction I’ve had is one day, when I was at a market with my mother, a man asked me ‘aren’t you shy about showing it to your mom?’ We just laughed.
Any advice for those interested in getting tattooed? My advice for others is this: make it count. I’ve met people who just find any available space on thier body and smack a tattoo on. I even knew a guy who just kept adding and adding to a tattoo he had on his arm cos he couldn’t decide on a design, eventually his arm was a mess, cos he just kept doing things to cover what he had previously done. But I’ve seen beautiful tattoos that are perfect and lovely, because they have been thought through.