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My birthday present to myself

My parents had never really been into piercing, and weren't particularly happy with the idea of me having a lot of them. I was really pleased when I turned 16 and could legally have piercing without parental consent, and jumped at the opportunity to do so. They'd only ever let me have single holes in my ear lobes, so when my 16th birthday was coming up, I knew I wanted my navel pierced, partly because it looked good, and partly because my parents wouldn't be able to see it and be bothered by it. They weren't particularly happy about my decision, but saw that they couldn't do much about it, so let me carry on.

Two days after my birthday, I went to Tribal Voice with my best friend, certain of what I wanted to be done. I was slightly nervous as I'd heard various rumours about navel piercing, some people saying it really hurt, some people saying it took ages to heal, some people saying it was quick and painless. Also, it was only the third piercing I'd had, so I didn't have much knowledge or experience. I wasn't sure what to expect or how it would feel, but as it turned out I was pleasantly surprised.

When I got to Tribal Voice I signed all the necessary forms and chose a pretty bar with a single purple stone to be pierced with. We didn't have to wait very long as it was quite early on a Monday morning and not many people were around. If I'd had to wait for a long time I would probably have become more and more nervous. We soon went into the piercing room, which was clean and tidy, and I started to feel more comfortable. I had a friend with me for moral support, but she was a bit squeamish and more worried than I was, even though she was only watching.

My bellybutton was cleaned and lines were marked on to show where the bar ought to be. This looked a bit more interesting than the dots that mark a lobe piercing. As I lay down to be pierced, I felt slightly more nervous, but generally I was OK. My bellybutton was frozen until I could really feel the cold and then we were all ready to begin. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the clamps being picked up, then felt a slight pinch. Just as this happened, my friend had a slightly worried expression on her face, so I assumed it was just the clamps being applied. I got ready to feel the needle go in, but then I was told that it was all done and the bar just needed to be put in. I've heard other people say that having the jewellery inserted is the worst part, but I didn't feel a thing and didn't really realise it was over until I looked at the piercing myself. Maybe I'd just had more freezing spray than most people.

I had a look in the mirror and I was really pleased; it looked exactly as I'd wanted it to. It felt sore, but looked great. A dressing was put on it to keep it clean and protected until I got back home, and then it was over. The experience was entirely painless, I didn't even notice it happening, it was much better than I expected.

The healing process took a long time, I had to wait about six months for it to heal completely, but it was relatively straightforward. There was a bit of bleeding at first, which has happened with most of the piercings I've had since then. After about three weeks  I noticed that the skin around the bar was red, dry and felt a bit itchy, particularly around the entrance hole. However, I bought a bottle of Vitamin E oil, and I rubbed a few drops on with a cotton bud after cleaning it, and the problem soon cleared up. The oil was fairly expensive to buy, but it was worthwhile as it sorted everything out and got my skin back to normal. Aside from that, nothing else went wrong, apart from knocking it a few times when it was first done and still felt sore. I soon got used to having the bar there and became more careful about it.

I'm still happy with this piercing, and I'm pleased I had it done. It was a good choice for my first non-ear piercing, as it was quick and comfortable, even though it took quite a while to heal. I still hear other people saying that their navel piercing was really painful, but I can't really believe that. It was definitely the most comfortable piercing I've had done. Since then I've had plenty of other piercing in various places, but my navel was still the most pain-free and comfortable.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 07 March 2007
in Navel Piercing

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Artist: Emma
Studio: Tribal+Voice
Location: Plymouth

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