This is the story of my second scarification. I'm still not quite sure why I chose this particular design. It certainly wasn't something I thought through, but it wasn't quite the spur of the moment thing either. It was more of a compulsion, one I felt obligated somehow to carry out. Right now, I'm really glad I did. Before I go any further, I will say this this scarification was self done, and I certainly done advocate doing this procedure yourself. That being said, it was a very positive experience for me, and I wouldn't have done it any other way. The design I had in mind was the word "REALITY". It was to be on my upper right leg, about three inches long with words about one inch high, all in capital letters. This experience starts in my room, a few months ago. It's night, and I laid on my bed listening to random instrumentals drift from my laptop. I was calm and relaxed, almost in a meditative state. One big reason for this, I wanted it to be a positive experience. Having experience (although limited) with self injury, I knew what it was like to draw all your negative emotion into something like this. This procedure was to stay positive. The relaxing music still played in my ears, while I gathered my equipment. It wasn't much really. I had acquired some #11 surgical scalpels (still sterile in their package of course), which I planned to use for the procedure. I also got a new roll of toilet paper to take care of the blood (not the best thing to use, but it sufficed). Prior to this I had also shaved the spot where I wanted the word to go, and wrote the word in pen where it was to be cut. I washed my hands thoroughly. From the point on, my hands began to tremble. That's one thing I remember very well, up to the point of thinking to myself, "How am I supposed to cut when I'm shaking this bad?" Then, with the music still in my ears, I sat down comfortably on by bed, peeled the package away from my surgical scalpel, and drew the first line. I was relieved. I'd have to admit that that first cut, the vertical line on the "R" was the best and deepest one. I'd attribute that to the anticipation and the raging endorphins. I was relieved. The pain factor of this was no where near what I expected it to be. I had received a bit of experience from self injury, but those were not as deep. By far the worst part was initially digging the scalpel into the flesh. That poking, sharp pain was one that nearly made me flinch more than once during the procedure. The actual cutting (drawing the scalpel across) was far less painful. Like the FAQ on BMEzine says, it's about like the feeling of a long paper cut. Now the pain was one thing I was ready for, but the one thing that I was not was the consistency. That feeling of the scalpel tearing through the skin. If I had to, I'd compare it to cutting through leather. I swear I could almost hear this odd tearing sound. It wasn't unpleasant, just unexpected. As for blood, there really wasn't much to worry about. In all honesty, I tried to refrain from wiping any that did build up (and actually, there was very little when compared to what I expected) unless it really interfered with seeing the design. I did this because, in some way...I wanted the blood there. The blood was part of the experience, and I didn't want to brush it away like it didn't matter, I wanted to embrace it as a part of me, not something foreign. As the cutting went on, it became shallower. Yes, it did become more painful as it progressed, despite all promises I made to myself that I would get it right the first time. So at the end...I ended up having to go over some of the same parts again, which I can tell you was not too pleasant. That stinging sensation was the type of pain that I had to bite back. Not pleasant at all. Afterwards (apart from feeling extremely content and satisfied...not to mention proud) I doused it in hydrogen peroxide, and wrapped it in bandages for the night. Aftercare was pretty simple and not too bad on the pain scale. I used a new toothbrush saturated with hydrogen peroxide to scrub it once a day until the really thick scabbing had built up. At that point, I ripped away the scab when it built up as a method of irritation. This continued until the nice new pink scar tissue emerged. Overall, I am very satisfied with the results, and little did I know at the time, but this modification would serve me another purpose as well. After a while I realized I could use it as a reality check. To be brief, when learning to lucid dream, one can perform a series of "reality checks", in which they ask their selves, "Is this real, or am I dreaming?" The idea is, that this becomes so much of a habit after a while, that while dreaming, one will ask their selves the same thing. But instead, they will realize that, yes, it is a dream, and in doing so become aware of their selves. The problem is not in the checks, it is in remembering to do them. So every time I thought of this modification, it would remind me to do a reality check. The funny thing is though, that as soon as I got this modification, I was aware of it in my dreams. But...there was also other words scarred around it. One word above reality, and two words below it. I know that those words formed a phrase of some sort, and it frustrates me to no end that I cannot remember what they are. But I know that one dream, I will eventually find out. On a last note...if you'd like to see this modification, please visit my IAM page (lucid-nightmare).
submitted by: lucid-nightmare
on: 18 July 2005