So apparently all this scabbing and pain is "normal" for an upper chest tat. I finally caved and called the shop this evening. Shane, being as patient as ever with me, explained it was not uncommon for tattoos in that area to scab more aggressively and be more painful during healing. He said when he had his done, it hurt for about 5 days and you just have to suck it up. Great. He recommended cocoa butter to soften up the scabs and hopefully reduce some of the cracking that causes the pain. I have no idea when I'm going to have time to get it, but I guess I really have no choice. My only concern is it'll burn. As I recall, I used cocoa butter on my first tattoo and it burned like nobody's business. The Aveeno I'm currently using doesn't burn at all.
I'm glad to know that it's normal and I didn't do something to fuck it up. I was really concerned this was somehow my doing. It would've been nice if somebody had warned me. I guess when you get to be as modded as I am, those who are doing the modding tend to forget you don't know as much as they do. Oh well, maybe in the future I'll know to pick Mark's brain if I'm getting tattooed in a new place.