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Symbolic scars

ryone! For as long as I remember, I have always wanted to get tattooed and pierced in various spots over my body. I had decided on an armband tattoo of all the nordic runes and a snake biting its own tail (the symbol of rebirth). What I didn't consider was my age. As I'm underage, I either needed parental consent (which I wasn't going to get!) or to wait a couple of years, which I wasn't prepared to do. I had no idea what I was going to do! I wanted these symbols on my body, but I obviously couldn't get them tattooed on...so what next?! Then came the brainwave: carve them on, and let them scar! This seemed to be the perfect solution, but I was shit-scared to cut into my body with a knife. It took weeks of mental preparation ("I'm not a wuss, I'm NOT a wuss" etc. ;) ) until I felt I could cope with something as dramatic as that. I'm glad I took my time! I spent hours deliberating over which symbols I really wanted and where they should be. Finally, I decided to start small, and just do one rune on the inside of my left ankle, about two inches above the anklebone. It was going to be the rune of protection, that looks like a Y with an extra stick between the two sticks at the top, pointing straight up.
Finally, after weeks of mental debating, I decided I was ready. Here we go! I cleaned the area with Betadine, and sterilized a pointed knife with alcohol. I didn't mark the symbol out beforehand with pen or anything, but just went for it freehand. Three deep breaths at this point, then I used the point of the knife and just kept scratching back and forth with it until I had a fairly deep gouge. I repeated this with the other three lines. Although it bled a bit when I first did it, that was the only trouble I had. I never disinfected it as it was healing (which, in retrospect, was not the cleverest thing to do...it's important, folks!). The next day, there was a beautiful, dark scab over the whole thing, and I could really see the shape. It was perfect. The scab fell off after about three weeks (it would probably have done so sooner had I not incessantly picked at it) and there it was: a bright pink scar in the exact shape I had wanted. Although the scar has faded to a darker, fainter pink over the four months since it was done, it's still quite noticable and has retained its original shape and size. Since then, I have added the symbol for 'warrior' an inch above my left nipple, over my heart, and the symbol for 'journey' on my right foot. If you want a scar and feel confident doing it yourself, go for it! The first cut is the hardest, as you might be nervous or scared of possible pain. It really doesn't hurt that bad, though! It feels a bit like a scrape when it's done, but the actual process is not particularly pinful. Honestly! I faint when I get shots at the doctors, and am terrified of needles etc. (Stupid, as I have a high pain tolerance otherwise). Before I let you go for it, however, I have a warning: one of my friends also is into cutting herself etc., and decided to carve something into the inside of her arm, half an inch below where the elbow bends. Mistake number one. She did this in the girls' room at school, which was her next mistake. Not only did she manage to cut into a vein, she was also walked in on by the sectretary, who promptly threw up at the sight of the blood. She needed two stitches and ws off school the next day. Choose your locations carefully, not just on your body, but also the location you do it in! Also, make sure it's what you really want. Is this the pattern you want? The right location? The right size? Ask yourself why you're doing it. To impress other? That's not a good reason. Make sure you want it for yourself. This is your body. Most importantly: take your time. If you're really scared of the pain, should you be diong somethng like this? (or just use some Lidocaine cream or something...;). If you don't want to do it yourself, there are tons of professionals out there, just make sure you find a good one. Be warned though: most of them won't do this if you're underage! Besides: doing it yourself is, in a weirs way, a bonding experience with your own body. Don't ask me to explain, I can't! Good luck, and email me if you have any questions or comments etc. -Anna

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submitted by: Anonymous
on: 29 June 2000
in Scarification

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Artist: yours+truly
Studio: my+bedroom
Location: my+house

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