I didn't really belong anywhere...

Tattoo of a thistle and shamrock

My dad came from Glasgow, Scotland (the thistle) and my mum came from Galway, Ireland (the shamrock).

When I was growing up in Kilburn most of my friends had the same Irish heritage as me. It was only when I left school that I realised that I didn’t really belong anywhere.

I wasn’t Irish or Scottish enough for the Irish or Scottish community or English enough for my neighbours.

My parents married in a time when you stayed together no matter what happened. They were married for 52 years.

I didn’t get on very well with my mum but I did with my dad. I wasn’t the person she wanted me to be so she was never happy with what I did or didn’t do.

She was very ill towards the end of her life; she had Parkinson’s disease for 15 years. My dad wasn’t ill until a few months before he died. He refused to go to a doctor so when he was too ill to put up a fight, I had to take him to A&E; he died in the hospital a month later.

I got this tattoo done for the first anniversary of my father’s death.

The tattoo is a constant reminder of the fact that I have different cultures as part of my DNA and I am proud to have them too.

written by ann