You're never alone with a wrist-bar
Looking back on it, I'd have to say it was just one of those happy coincidences. Back in the spring of this year, Noot and Puck were organizing a 'Meet' - a get-together of British IAM members down in Brighton. And Brighton just happened to be where Perforations, one of the UK's premiere pircing studios were located. Too good an opportunity to miss? I thought so. While I'd been happy with the piercings I'd got from my usual studio - Piercing World, at Nuneaton, where I worked - I felt I'd just about exhausted their repertoire.
I'd persuaded Piercing World to do me a Madison, which was my first foray into the world of surface or 'unusual' piercings, but now I was keen to take the next step forward. I decided on a wrist-bar. First and foremost, I thought of all places Perforations would have the expertise to make a good job of it for me. And although I'd seen them on BME I'd never seen one 'live', And, I figured, if need be, I could always hide it from prying eyes at work under a long-sleeved shirt. Perfect! - the stage was set. I did a bit of foraging around.. and yes - my ambitions could be fulfilled.
I took the train down to Brighton and arrived in good time to get my piercing done without missing any of the fun of the Meet. Perforations don't have an appointment system for Saturdays, so we just sat and waited my turn, I felt not the slightest bit jittery or nervous - I was really looking forward to it. I signed my life away on the consent form.... and down we went to the piercing room. Dom, my piercer, was cool and relaxed - I felt completely at ease. We chatted and joked. I decided on my right wrist, as I have my watch on my left, and I didn't want it getting in the way. Placement and marking took more than just a few minutes to get the right effect.
I opted to have freeze-anaesthetic applied, and I didn't really feel anything much - a really cold numbing sensation as a layer of frost appeared on my skin and then more of a sore sensation during the actual piercing. I watched the needle being inserted, and then...it was strange seeing a flexible tube being inserted into my hand, but in next to no time the bar (they use PTFE at Perforations) was in place and the balls screwed on. Noot took some pictures for me with my digital camera, and then Dom put a dresssing over it to give it a bit of protection for the first few hours. We rejoined everyone else at the Meet, and before long I had of course succumbed to the temptation to peel off the dressing and show off my new wrist bar. I was very proud of it.
Aftercare has been to a large extent trial-and-error. Initially I had few problems with it: just keeping it clean and dry seemed to work wonders. But then as the swelling subsided the extra length that had been 'built in' to allow for that meant that the ends protruded noticeably, and I went through a bad phase of catching it on my clothing and of knocking it against all manner of everyday objects, which resulted in a certain amount of inflammation and soreness for days on end. Salt water turned out not to be the answer; it simply dried out my skin and left an area of peeling all around. Antiseptic cream and lotion I found was a much better solution.
I also noticed the bar migrating: first it inched its way slowly down my arm towards my wrist and then slowly back again again, so that now it's more or less back to where it was originally. Weird! Fortunately it hasn't so far shown any sign of rejecting, though.
Since part of my difficulty had been the fact that the right-hand end of the bar particularly kept getting knocked, I got it trimmed a little when I was back down at Perforations this last weekend. It took just a few moments for Rob to unscrew the ball off one end, slide it out, chop a few millimetres off with some sharp scissors, bend it back into the right shape and re-install it for me. It both looks and feels much happier now.
So that was that .....but not quite! It's six months to the day since I got done. While I still have it and I'm still pleased with it I can truthfully say that in the intervening time I've had more comments, questions and reactions from all manner of perfect strangers to my wrist-bar than to all of my other visible piercings put together. During the summer I wore T-Shirts or shirts with the sleeves rolled up, and so most of the time my wrist bar was fully on view.
FAQs / Reactions: You name it - they ask it:-
Does that hurt? How do they stay in? Does it go all the way through? How can you stand the pain? You must be brave! What made you do it?
I have to be honest and say that for the most part reaction has either been negative or disbelieving; only a couple of people locally have admired it. It's partly because where I live it's so unusual - I haven't seen anyone else with one - and I guess it's a 'fear of the unknown' thing. The most difficult thing, I've found, is convincing people that I'm not in constant agony with it! I'm not - I love it!
submitted by: Don
on: 07 Nov. 2001
in Surface & Unusual Piercing