My brother, Cam, was a mainstay during Lauren's time at the hospital. He was there with her almost every day. And he is so in love.

When we were in the trenches with Lauren, Cameron wrote me an email to encourage Matt and I and one of the quotes that he included was "Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors." Cameron really took that quote to heart and he believes that Lauren, and all of us, have grown because of what we have been through. We have been challenged and made it through, together.

To commemorate Lauren's accomplishments and the changes that it has brought to himself and our family, Cameron commissioned a tattoo design based on his ideas. I suggested this:

Cam wasn't as excited as I was with the idea of a creepy picture of Lauren on his arm. Instead, he told the tattoo artist, Stace, from Water Street Tattoo, Lauren's story and said that he wanted an anchor and an L made of rope. The artist came back with this design.

At first it just looks like a nice image of anchors and some rope but there are some intricacies that make it so beautiful. Look at the photo below. There is a beautiful rope L, hearts on the ends of the anchors and where the two anchors cross, there is a perfect heart upside down! I've never been a fan of tattoos before this one.

Matt, Lauren and I piled into the car to head downtown to see the deed get done. When we got there, Cam was being prepped and was nervously sweating up a storm in anticipation of the pain. Lauren found the process and all the artwork on the wall absolutely fascinating. I did remind Cameron that the back of the arm is very sensitive - did he not remember us pinching him there when we were younger? Apparently he is a glutton for punishment.

Here we go!

We took off after just over an hour to get Lauren home in time for bath time and bed. After almost three and a half hours of tattooing (the last one hour being "absolute torture"), Cam had a beautiful finished product.

This past year has changed all of us on the inside and now Cam has committed the change to his outside as well. Next it will be our turn.

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