Editor's note: Tat-Tuesday is a weekly series that features students around campus and their tattoos.
As a child of two pastors, incoming graduate student Nick Giron was raised in the Christian church. He wanted a tattoo immediately after turning 18, and using his skin as a way to celebrate his faith seemed to be the most obvious choice.
“I have faith in myself, my dreams, my religion,” Giron said. “Even if I don’t have faith on the inside, even if it’s smaller than a mustard seed, it’s on my flesh.”
Even as Giron grew up part of a church, he did not take the religion seriously until college. After going to Texas Tech for his undergraduate career, he started to struggle with living on his own.
“I had my friends, but they’re just friends,” he said. “I had to look at myself on the inside, and now I’m starting to see what my faith means to me. Faith is having no evidence of the unseen, but believing that it’s still there.”
After sociology junior Matt Thibault left home for college, he began to transition away from his strict Christian upbringing. As he moved away from a religious life, he commemorated the person he used to be with a tattoo.
“It’s the number 1611, the year the King James Bible was established,” Thibault said. “It’s like this is who I was, but now I’m ready for something else.”
For the first 18 years of his life, Thibault was mostly surrounded by people similar to him. He only saw people of the same religion, from the same place, with the same point of view. College presented him with a wide range of new ideas, new religions and new people, so he moved away from his background.
“My family thinks the same way the church thinks,” he said. “And then I was able to grow socially. It was kind of a gateway to the world.”