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My Life and Death as a Modified Person

I must first warn you, this is somewhat of an autobiography. Before you make any assumptions, no, I am not suicidal; no I am not going to kill myself; and no, I did not die.

I am writing this because I want people to know what it is really like to be a modified person, not just someone with tattoos and piercings. Personally, I see being a modified person, not as a choice, but a way you're made.

I shall begin at the age of two. My mother took me to get my first ear piercing, standard left lobe, no big deal. I wanted it, so don't being to attack my mother for being irresponsible and pressing her will upon me.

Looking back, I can see that I always had the modified person inside me. The first facial piercing I ever saw was at the age of eight, a man entered the local 7-11, where I was buying a slurpee, with a rather large septum piercing. I remember that day clearly, the guy still sticks out in my memory, not as a monster, or a freak, but as a man who looked different. He did not scare me, I was fascinated. He was stored in my subconcious until later, when I would need him.

Up until the age of fourteen, I have had too many ear piercings to count. At the height, my ears could be counted as ten on the left, eight on the right. All standard Claire's, I hadn't discovered piercing studios yet. I would repierce, take them out, repierce, take them out, and so on.

At fourteen I talked my mom into letting me have my eyebrow pierced. I loved it, it was beautiful. It set me apart from the other kids all around me, and I finally had something of my own. I should mention that I was the fat kid until seventeen, but that's another story.

At fifteen, the legal age in Virginia to be pierced with parent's consent, I received my first septum piercing. The feeling was orgasmic, to say the least. In that instant I knew I had something here. I felt right. I felt secure. I was happy.

It is also at fifteen that I began to stretch my lobes. I considered it a rite of passage; something that I must prove to myself to grow. I got them up to 1" and was contemplating on going higher.

By the age of seventeen I was quite heavily pierced. I had a 4g septum, vertical labret, two anti-eyebrows(one under each eye), centre tongue ring, both nipples, and an industrial in each ear. That was the highpoint in my life. The only time I can remember looking into the mirror and liking what stared back.

High School graduation, the big day for most teenagers. I am free to make my own way in the world; so, what will I do? I must tell you that my family comes from extremely humble roots. My grandmother had six children, barely kept them clothed and fed, but she did her damndest. My mom was a single parent until she met my step father. My biological father ran out before I was born. I felt it was my responsibility to raise my family in the social ladder. I had always been the smart one, the one to whom everything usually came easy. I figured, if I couldn't do it, who could succeed in my family?

I didn't want to spend my parent's money to go to college, so I figured I would have to make my own way. I looked around, and found nothing. No one wanted to hire me because of my appearance.

Where is there a good job, with great benefits, that will take care of me? The logical solution I came up with was the military. But alas, I had to virtually change who I was to join, didn't I? I had a decision to make, and like most people, I chose money of happiness.

Here I am, standing in front of the mirror, removing all of my badges of honor. The things that make me complete, my armor. With my piercings in, I feel as if I have a buffer between myself and the outside world. They are gone, I have removed them.

Weeks go by, my lobes don't shrink. My recruiter tells me I have to close my lobes in order to enter the service, and surgery is definitely an option. For $900 I have my ears closed. I remember the procedure quite clearly. I was silent for the entire event. I was quiet while they were slicing me open, sewing me shut, and leaving the office. But when I got in the car, with no one around but my mother... I wept. There is no other word to describe it, I wept. The only thing I can relate it to is being raped. The feeling that someone has taken a part of you, a part that you didn't want to give.

Now I have a few tattoos started into sleeves, all of which must be hidden. I sometimes become very depressed when I think of all that I gave up.

I want to close with a message to anyone who doesn't understand why we are modified. It made me feel complete; it covered my nakedness. When I was pierced, I could face anyone down. I could take any challenge and flatten it. It's like telling someone who is gay, that they don't have to be that way, it's their choice. No, it isn't a choice, it's the way I am.

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submitted by: Anonymous
on: 09 Oct. 2006
in Culture

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