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I'd been thinking about getting my belly button pierced for several months. At first it was a thought just to make my boyfriend at the time mad. We had a this sort of relationship were I was more or less not allowed to change. And I knew the fastest way to get him mad was to get something pierced or get a tattoo. And though I wanted a tattoo, I wasn't sure I would want a tattoo 10 years from now. So, I offhandedly thought about getting a navel piercing. Though I hadn't built up the nerve to do it because I kept telling myself it was an act of rebellion. And after a while I would regret doing it.
But after I broke up with my boyfriend, I thought more serious about the piercing and found that even I had no real reason to do it now other than I wanted to. And I wanted to. So, I thought about it and thought about it. But I was afraid it would hurt too much or I told myself I didn't have the money. Then one Saturday afternoon, I got in the shower and looked at my navel and thought about the piercing again. I said to myself "This is crazy!! You fool just do it!!" So, I called my new boyfriend and told him I wanted to go do a little looking at places and pricing and all that. He said he'd go with me if I wanted him too. So, I called to see how late the places in town were open.
This may sound crazy but the first and only place I called was the place I had it done. But the guy sounded compentent and nice over the phone. He was even willing to stay later to wait for me to get there. My first question was "How much is this going to hurt?"
"Well, I won't lie to you, there is going to be some pain. It will be more painful than your ears but it's not too terrible and it's over quickly." he told me.
My only intent that night had been to ask questions but I ended up making and appointment to get it done. So, I got dressed, dried my hair and walked over to my boyfriend's fraturnity. The whole way over there, I could feel the butterflies of nervousness forming in my stomach. I walked in the side door and up the millions of stairs into my boyfriend's room.
"It's go time!!!" I shouted and pointed at him. He looked puzzled. He and a friend were watching "Cruel Intentions." "I'm getting it done, I have an appointment at 7:30."
"Do you want me to go?" he asked.
"If you want to, but we have to hurry and get there." We bantered back and forth a while about whether he would go with me or not. Finally, he said "Tell me honestly do you want me to go with you?"
"Well yes I'd like you go with me." So, it was settled he went with me.
We walked into the shop and I introduced myself to the piercer. He started by looking and my navel. I told him I didn't want anything too big, I was looking for a small feminine look. He said he wouldn't put anything too large in a navel my size anyway.
Picking out the jewelry was kind of hard. I knew it was going to be there for quite a while, so picking something that would go with everything in my closet was sort of out of the question. So, I decided to pick something that fit my personality. Something that said something about me. I think my ring does that. It's a shiny purple ring, with an irredesant red ball. Purple is my favorite color, and the slight flashiness in the ring and ball is a lot like me. I have a flashy side but it's well balanced with my seriousness so it isn't always apparent. The ring was perfect.
He went over the cleaning and aftercare procedures. Giving me full details in writing, with the stated understanding if I had problems or questions of any kind, to stop in and talk to him or the other piercer.
"Stop in anyway, I like to see the progress of piercings."
Next he took me to the room where the piercing was to be done. It was a small room and I was a little afraid the piercer would say my boyfriend had to wait outside. But he got to come in. I sat down on the table bed thingy. The piercer started to pull out all the tools and clamps and such. I started to get a little nervous and I think the piercer could sense my tension.
"That's a lot of clamps, huh?" he said.
"Yeah," my boyfriend and I sighed at the same time, with wide eyed anxiety.
"Don't worry, only one actually touches your skin. the rest are for bending the ring and making it easier to insert." he smiled at me.
Watching him set up was the hardest part. IT was so nerve racking and I keep thinking "Are you CRAZY!!!!! You've never met this man before today and you are going to trust him to poke a hole in your body????" I could just hear everyone in my high school class, saying "She'd never get it done. She's too straight laced."
I can't believe I'm going to do this." I looked at my boyfriend and said.
"Let me guess? You aren't the type who does stuff like this?" the piercer asked, I nodded, "Well, I hate to tell you, you are now." he smiled. It seems like a snide remark but it made me feel better somehow.
The piercer had fabulous bedside manner I guess you could call it. He knew I was nervous and could probably tell I hadn't had anything other than my ears pierced. But he stayed calm and explained things to me, making light apropriate jokes and always smiling. He also changed his rubber gloves about a million times, which made me feel like this was going to be clean and sterile and professional. Once he was all set up I knew it was go time and there would be no backing out now.
He had me stand up so he could clean and mark my navel with enter and exit dots. Then I laid down on the table and the procedure was underway. He clamped my navel to give the needle a guide. I squirmed a bit. "This is the most uncomfortable part," he said. That was a lie, at least for me, the needle was the most uncomfortable part.
"Do you want a hand grip?" the piercer asked. I just stared at him with wide terrified eyes. He smiled at me to reassure me. Then, jestured to my boyfriend to stand above my head. "Now just take his hands, a deep breath, exhale and it will all be over."
I took the deep breath but didn't quite make it to the exhale part. I felt the needle prick - no, STAB - my skin. I opened my eyes very very wide and I could not let the breath in my lungs go. I squeezed my boyfriend's hands with a force never known to me before. Then the pain calmed a bit and I exhaled.
"It's almost over, I just have to push the ring through." the piercer informed me as I felt another wave of pain. Finally, the ring pushed completely through and the needle was out. "I just have to close the ring." he said.
He finished closing the ring and put the ball on. He helped me sit up and told me to sit there while he cleaned up. He kept asking me if I felt okay or if I felt dizzy. I said I was okay just a little flush. He explained to me that was endorphines or something.
I stood up and looked in the mirror at my new addition. I loved it. It looked very cool.
"Welcome to the wonderul world of body piercing. You're one of those people now." the piercest said to me and smiled proudly. This seemed a little odd. Like it was some sort of right of passage. Though after thinking about it, it sort of was. It was this whole new level I hadn't dared to venture to before.
After paying and being told once more about the cleaning and open door if I had questions, we left the shop. I felt a little different, a little bolder and braver. It was a bit sore over the rest of the weekend. It stung the first few times I cleaned it. It hurt to get in and out of the ack seat of a car so I got the front seat for the weekend no matter who called shotgun, cuz I had a stab wound.
Telling my family was a bit of an adventure. My mother was upset, she didn't even want to see it when I came home. I think she's pretending I didn't do it. I didn't tell my step dad cuz I knew he'd just bitch about it forever and a day. My step mom thought it was really cool and wanted to see it as soon as I walked in the door. My dad was interested and thankfully didn't have much to say about it. One of the benefits to parents under 40 I guess. My grandmother thought it was "cute as hell" to put it in her words. MY cousin Bethy loved it and my Aunt Deb, though she rolled her eyes, I think thought it was cute too.
I've had it done for 2 months and just had a different ring put in today. I haven't had any serious problems with it. I had to wear different pants for work so it wouldn't get irritated. But nothing serious has occured. It's healing fine.
If I had it to do over again, I would. In a second, I'd do it again. I think it's sexy and cute and very feminine. I love it. Will I love it in 10 years? I don't know but if I don't I can take it out. But for now it's exactly what I wanted.
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 15 July 1999
in Navel Piercing