Between my shoulder blades...

A tattoo of a pink triangle on a man's back

My tattoo is of a pink triangle. The symbol appropriated by the Nazis in their so-called concentration camps to mark the “homosexuals”.

For years I struggled with myself, with my family, with society, to understand and be who I am. A few words cannot do justice to describing that struggle.

My struggle was of uncertainty. Not knowing whether things might ever improve. Uncertainty as to what I thought. Was I at fault? Was I to blame? Was I ever going to be part of something, or confined to the margins forever?

And so I struggled.

My struggle was of pain. The physical and psychological pain of bullying and fear. The pain of knowing pain. The pain of world weariness. The pain that, little by little, tear by tear, snatched-smile-from-a-stranger cheer, I found a way to own, and ultimately convert into a power for me.

My struggle was of love. L O V E.

Now I found my power, the courage to be me, with the support of those who have gone before in this struggle and those around me now, I am never going back to hiding or fear.

I am proud to be me and the pink triangle is part of who I am. Nazis may have used it for evil purposes but like others before me, I reclaim that symbol as mine, one of celebration, joy and life.

More than that it is of love. Love is all we need. Don’t complicate this life with those things that suck life and love away.

This was not, is not, will never be, just my struggle.

Between my shoulder blades sits a beautiful, small piece of art. My tattoo. My symbol. My pain. Me.

Between my shoulder blades, poking out above the collar of my shirt, rising from my core to my head and out to the world.

Look and see. Look and read. Look and learn.

written by simon