I don’t like being stolen from. I guess it was about 4 years ago or so, our house got broken into while everyone was sleeping. We didn’t realize that anything had been taken until the morning when things turned up missing. A pack of my second ex-husband’s cigarettes, a backpack, my purse. My kids had been sleeping upstairs, so were the the rest of us. I mean, it could’ve been a lot worse, but it was so violating! It really messed with my head, especially since my great grandmother had been murdered when I was a small child by somebody who broke in. Strange how things like that haunt you years later. It was after that incident that we decided it was time to get a dog. Our little miniature schnauzer might not protect us from burglars, but he could at least sound an alarm.
Once again I feel like I’m being stolen from, but it’s an entirely different scenario.
It was probably 5 or 6 years ago that I came up with an idea. Mandala tattoos were (and still are) quite popular, and I was trying to think of a way to turn mandalas into something personal for my clients. I came up with the idea of Name Flowers. Basically I invented a way to transform any name into a mandala or flower by giving each letter of the alphabet a number. I would draw a series of circles, one inside of the other, as many circles as there are letters in the name. Starting with the innermost circle, I would divide each circle into the number of petals corresponding to the letter (my name would start with one single circle for the letter a, followed by a ring of 14 petals for the letter n, 7 petals for the letter g, 5 for e, 12 for l and finally one more circle for the last letter a). You can check out Name Flowers on facebook if you’re curious. That’s also one of my pages.
I was so excited about my idea that I even looked into how I could protect it. I called lawyers and asked about copyrights and patents and all kinds of stuff. It appears that you can’t patent an idea though. If I had a design for each name, I could probably copyright those, but really legally I didn’t have anything I could do to protect my concept.
I was married at the time, and also in a business partnership with my husband. He was supportive of my ideas but for the rest not really interested in them. It was agreed that those were my babies, my projects. We registered a trademark to our business, and after we divorced the trademark became my property. It was agreed upon that Name Flowers belongs to me.
At this point you’re probably guessing it, and you’d be right. A certain someone is planning to use my idea to make money. He’s got a client scheduled for Friday and I’m not happy about it at all.
I feel violated, like he’s taken something that I felt belonged to me. He told me last week when I came back to The Netherlands that he was planning on using my idea. We are still working together, at least I get the opportunity to work at my old shop for 2019 while I’m also technically homeless and waiting for a house. Coming back to work with him last week felt like a cold bath after a month of being at a shop in the US where I felt well liked and appreciated. When he told me he was planning on using my idea I lost my shit. I told him that I’d appreciate it if he didn’t use my idea while I’m still at his shop. Today I saw his appointment in the agenda. I know for certain that I am not liked or appreciated where I currently work, not even respected. I also know that if I don’t get out soon the toxicity will grow legs and start calling us mom and dad.
I’m always trying to learn and to grow. I think my lesson here is that it’s time to let my idea go out into the world. I always knew it would one day anyway, I just didn’t expect it to be him who took it away from being mine. Unlike the last time I was burglarized though, I’m not going to get another doggy. It’s time for a new shop. If anybody knows of a shop in the Breda area who needs someone, let me know! Or if anybody knows of a small space for rent which is clean and with running water, please let me know.
I’m a traveling tattoo lady who loves to keep her hands and mind busy.