Sunday, July 31, 2016

Tattoos are permanent

I got a tattoo yesterday and I love it more than I thought I would. I went to “Alpha & Omega” tattoo parlor in St George. Ben was the artist and he did a terrific job. Let me explain why I wanted to do this and the symbolism of it all.

Sharry and I had talked about getting tattoos on and off for a few years but didn’t ever commit because they are just too dang permanent and we were saving for a house, baby and all of our other awesome future plans. After losing Sharry this summer I definitely found something that I want permanently and I no longer really have any big future plans.

I know many of my readers do not look favorably on tattoos but let me try to explain the why and the symbolism here. To begin with the hand specifically represents Ahimsa, which essentially means nonviolence or compassion to all living beings. This has its route in Jainism and other eastern philosophies and was espoused by Gandhi in his search for justice and the divine. It is the overarching Buhanan-Decker guiding life philosophy. Sharry cherished Ahimsa and I think lived it better than the vast majority of human beings. She became a vegetarian, fought for justice and loved deeply because of the type of person she was who sought Ahimsa.

At the top of the hand is the sun piercing through a cloudy/stormy background. This was totally Ben’s idea and artistic touch but it works perfectly for my situation. As I have written in past posts Sharry was and is the sun of my life. Without her my life feels incredibly dark and empty yet still at times her love pierces through my pain and suffering to bring rays of peace and light.

The center X and P are actually the Greek letters Chi and Rho which together form a symbol designating Christ or Christian. Sharry and I fell in love with this symbol when we backpacked through Europe and saw it all over Rome as we learned about early martyrs and discovered it inscribed in ancient Christian catacombs. I have always loved and appreciated Jesus. His teachings have made our world a better place. One cannot live the words of Jesus found in the gospels of the New Testament and not be a force for love and peace. Throughout this horrible traumatic process Jesus has become a source for comfort and hope as a possible route back to my lost beloved and the kingdom of heaven. My relationship with him is dynamic but permanent.

The three dots can represent both the holy trinity and BD3. Plus three is my favorite number.

The olive branches represent victory and peace. In this situation I love both. Right now in my life I need peace more than anything else. Peace and hope that everything is going to be more or less OK again, knowing that one way or another Shar is at peace, that the hole in my heart won’t always throb with pain and loss but will scab over and leave a Sharry shaped scar that I can always remember and cherish. Victory that our deep love can overcome death in this life and hopefully the next.

And of course at the bottom is Sharry’s signature. I originally wanted her signature placed on the ring finger but that would not fit unless it was done incredibly small. I love where it’s located as it is the foundation and base of the whole piece. Sharry is and always will be the rock that I build my life on through the influence she had on me for twelve years and all the amazing gifts, words, songs, stories and memories that she leaves behind for her family and friends.


  1. It looks amazing, Jared. And if it means something to //you//, and //you// are happy with it, that is what matters the absolute most. And what a beautiful message you're portraying with it. I hope it gives you peace and comfort in your times of darkness.

  2. This is beautiful Jared. I love the meaning behind it all. Good luck with your new job

  3. Love this, beautiful image behind that tattoo❤️

  4. You have put a lot of thought and significance into this beautiful work of art. I am happy that you are finding love and comfort in a relationship with Jesus. Remember, He knows all about suffering and enters in to it with us. I like to think of Him as the shepherd who walks through the shit with us. PEACE!

  5. I love her signature and all of the symbolism. I just read your obituary for Sharry and she is just so amazing! Every time I read about her I feel like I have so far to go and so much to learn. I wish I had gotten to know her.