I have a little time before I need to get moving for the day. I’ve got a second cake tasting up in Wilmington, followed by a floatation therapy session afterwards. I was going to do the house update post; however, I do not think I have enough time. So if you follow me on social media, the title likely gave good indication of what my topic is.
On Monday, October 23, I got my second tattoo.
The go-to question for a new tattoo without obvious significance is, “so what does it mean?” Well, MXXIII is the roman numeral for 1,023.
I’ve known I wanted the tattoo you see in that photo for years now. I’ve been talking about it recently quite a bit, but never had a push-comes-to-shove moment. On Monday morning, I woke up and thought to myself, what better day to get my 1023 tattoo than on 10/23? So in a wave of impulse, I made my way to the tattoo shop after work—it was exciting, exhilarating, and a very powerful moment for me.
But what does it mean?
There’s a phenomenon where many individuals find themselves looking at the clock at a certain time every day. They don’t plan to, it just happens. For many people, 11:11 is common and so is 9:11. For me? It has always been 10:23. I not only see it on clocks, I see it in my everyday life. I’ve been in stadiums where the clock is stopped at 10:23 left in the quarter. I’ve seen it in movies in the background. Heck, I did a mud run a few years ago and out of every single number I could have had, mine was 10230.
It’s always felt special—it’s always felt like mine. So a long time ago, I got it in my head that 10:23 was going to really mean something one day. Something significant was going to happen at 10:23 or on 10/23 or I’d glance around and see 10.23 somewhere. It would be my sign to pay attention to the moment.
Over the years, I put a lot of pressure on that number. I got my hopes up, often got crushed, and even swore to give up on it. But deep down I knew I always wanted 10.23 to happen organically anyway—I didn’t want to have a hand in it. But, as time passed, the number began to take on a different meaning.
10.23 is everywhere for me. Maybe there will be one defining moment, so clearly related to it. But at the end of the day, life does not boil down to one significant event and 10.23 is no longer about living for a singular day, minute, or moment.
It has become a symbol of hope and my ability to have faith in the intangible. It’s a reminder each time I see it that this is my life and it’s one worth paying attention to. So, I had it tattooed on my wrist…as a permanent reminder that every moment I spend breathing and loving and having faith is monumental.
To add another level, I got it in roman numerals. I could have done “10:23,” but wanted to pay homage to my time in Rome—a truly defining time in my life and one I will never forget. Only as I was getting ready to leave to go get the tattoo did I realize I studied abroad in the year 2013…
(In case you missed it; take a look at the numbers which make up the year.)
Some people may roll their eyes at my justification or the tattoo itself, and that’s ok. It’s concept is far out there, but that’s also the point and, more importantly, it’s mine. We all need a little reminder every now and then to slow down and pay closer attention to the details of our lives. I’ve simply chosen to get my most common and eye-catching reminder tattooed on my wrist…