"justin's introduction to piercing" - or - "hey buddy, hurt me"
i had been thinking about getting my hand pierced for a long time. for some reason, the thought of it just appealed to me. i'd never been too terribly attracted to piercing before, not even my ears. but just the thought of having a ring through my handwebbing..
i went and talked to the piercer about two weeks prior to getting it done. i told him i had been thinking about it, and wanted more details. he told me that they always discouraged hand piercings, because of the high maintanance factor, and the high chance of rejection. the rejection factor, of course, made me want to have it done even more - just to see if my body could stand it. i told the piercer i'd have to think about it for awhile, and walked out. within five minutes, i knew i'd get it.
i got a six day vacation from work, and my girlfriend and i drove to boston to enjoy different scenery. we stayed for two days, drove back home (new york area) on the third. as we got closer to the city, i decided to get it done, right then. we went down to the place, told him i wanted to go ahead with it. he was pleased - i think he really wanted to do it, but it was his duty to discourage it.
we picked out jewelry, and i told him i wanted a ring. he recommended a ring anyway, because he felt it was easier to clean than a barbell. more annoying to live with, with it getting in the way easier, but easier to keep clean while it healed. it ended up being a 12gauge ring. the size scared me at first, but i had made up my mind to get it done, so we went ahead with it. he popped the bead off, and twisted the ring so that there was a larger hole between the two ends.
we proceeded into the piercing room, and i sat on the leathery table. he prepared his tools of nastiness. he cleaned my hand with some brownish substance, washed it thoroughly, then cleaned my hand again with alcohol. he pinched around for awhile, making sure there was nothing vital in the way. he hand be bend my thumb in different ways, so that he could see where the skin folded when my hand was closed. he said there are about three major creases, and that the piercing should be in a place that's kind of close to all of them, thus making my life easier when i closed my hand with the piercing in it.
he found the spot he liked, and marked it with a permanent marker. i liked it, he liked it. he cleaned off the mark he had made, made some measurements, and marked an entrance and exit hole. he put a clamp over the area. i'm not sure of the proper name, but it pulled the skin tight and made his life easier. he unveiled the needle - i was getting nervous. he smeared a jelly-like substance all over the area of my hand, and most of the needle. here it comes..
i closed my eyes and relaxed. i squeezed my weird little $16 macy's hat in my left hand. (i'm left handed, and i had my right hand done.) he told me that i'd take a deep breath, exhale, and it'd be through. i took the breath.. held it.. let it out..
"oh, nevermind. just a minute," he said, fiddling with something on the table. then we were ready again. i breathed in, felt the needle sitting on my hand. breathed out, felt a SHARP pain. it didn't sting, it hurt - but it wasn't for more than two seconds. i opened my eyes to find a two inch spike protruding from my hand. the thickness of the needle amazed me. and no blood, either. i told him i had expected it, and he asked if i wanted him to try again..
he got the ring ready. i closed my eyes again. i guess he pushed the needle through, followed it with the ring. i couldn't really see - i didn't really want to. that wasn't so bad. then, he bent the ring back together and put the bead on it.
when we were through, he asked me how it had been. "unpleasant," was all i could tell him. he asked me what i thought of the piercing, and i told him, "i can live with it." i guess he expected me to be elated about it, but i'm not that sort of person.
we went over care instructions, he gave me a few slips of paper, and i was on my way.
it's been a week today, and it's healing pretty well, i guess. i had trouble turning the ring the first two days, but it's been fine after that. i clean it two-three times a day with hibiclens, and i soak it in epsom salts three or four times, whenever i can. it swelled up something fierce yesterday, nice strong ache and lots of redness. i soaked it for about fourty-five minutes and all was well again.
the biggest problem is that the needle made a straight hole, but the ring is (obviously) curved, so it pulls the flesh around a bit. whats more, the ring flops about some, it rests against my thumb, or the side of my hand. when it moves around, it pulls the flesh around with it, twisting it around. i'm getting used to this, and it doesn't hurt at all, but it is a terribly awkward feeling, especially since i've never had anything done before.
_ _| |_ figure "a". (this inaccurate | | | |_ diagram serves no | | | | | purpose but to | | | | | -------- fingers amuse me.) | | | | | | | /\ === ---------- ring \ \_| | thumb ------ \ | \_
you would not believe the amount of things that are hard to do when using only one hand. brushing your hair, buttoning shirts and pants, shampooing, LACING YOUR BOOTS, trying to put deodorant on, trying to pry the top off the deodorant in the first place, trying to tear one of those ketchup packets open.. if nothing else, this piercing has taught me to appreciate the "gift" of my being born fully functional.
i work at a record store thirty-eight hours a week, and in three days i've had at least fifteen people stare at me in horror and ask, "didn't that hurt?" of course it hurt, you trying sticking a big piece of stainless steel through your body. shessh. i have long (half inch) fingernails on all my fingers as it is (another sign of my uselessness), and the ring in my hand makes me look all the more wicked..
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 01 Jan. 1997
in Surface & Unusual Piercing