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Sternum Experience, from one military brat to another

My parents always try to figure out who was "responsible" for my piercing obsession. My father blames my mom for getting my ears pierced when I was three years old, and for getting my nostril when I was sixteen. My mom blames my dad for piercing my helix (at home) when I was 14. It's a never-ending battle, really.

But with my sternum, there was nobody to blame but myself. I'd wanted one ever since I saw a picture on BMEZINE.com back in February 2006. I thought they were so beautiful, but I knew my parents would never agree to it, so I settled for "acceptable" ones (in their opinion), like helixes and my inverse navel.

Let's fast forward to December 27th, 2006 when my Dad drives me and my sister downtown to shop at Rideau Centre. I've wanted this piercing for so long, and I'm in the area. I pretty much said "Fuck it, I'm going to go get it". I split up from my sister for an hour and made the trek (in the cold) to Planet Ink. I first went into the Extreme one (there are two locations) and they said that the regular piercer, Matt, was at the other location. He sent me along there and also gave me a flyer for 5$ off the piercing (I forgot to use it though!) Another five minute walk and I'd arrived. I was so excited I literally jumped into the shop.

I went to the front desk and said "I was sent from the other shop to look for a Matt person..." The front desk guy started laughing, and the guy beside him said "Hi, I'm Matt." A bit embarrassing, but who can blame me? I'd never met him before! I told him I wanted my sternum done and he said he could do it no problem. I showed them my ID, and a few of the guys behind the desk complimented my driver's license photo. Personally I thought it was horrible, but apparently not! I paid (106$ total) and went straight to the room.

This was the third time I'd been in there. It's starting to feel like a second home. Matt talked to me before we got started. I was so excited to get pierced by him because I'd read about him on BME and heard nothing but great reviews about him. We talked while he did the markings and got ready (with his signature black gloves) and I found out that he's a military brat like me. Both our dads were in the military, and he got kicked out at 16 for having piercings. Now for fifteen years, it's been his career. I talked about my interest in piercings and body mods and we had decent conversation for about 5 or 10 minutes. I nervously told him that this was the first piercing I was getting alone, and the first one I didn't ask my parents about. He chuckled and agreed to place it a bit lower so they wouldn't see it as well.

I was worried about the pain. Less than a month ago I'd gotten my inverse navel, which was brutally painful. Matt clamped and needled. Surprisingly, my sternum hurt a lot less! It was pretty painless. I could feel the needle but it didn't hurt. A few seconds later and the jewelry was in. He had trouble screwing in the top bead at first but eventually got it in. I quickly jumped up and looked in the mirror and instantly fell in love with it. It was perfectly straight. I thanked him and he wished me luck with the piercing, saying, "From one military brat to another!" I smiled and thanked him again, and walked back to meet my sister at the mall.

I didn't tell my parents until the day after, and needless to say, they were shocked. Their reaction was a lot better than I expected so I was pleased. Even my dad, who's anti-piercings, said I could keep it. He still thinks it's gross but whatever.

I've been doing hot compresses twice a day, and it's been doing great. Of course it's pretty early to tell how it will turn out but it looks great right now.

If you are in Ottawa I highly recommend Matt Cottrell, at Planet Ink Extreme, on Rideau St. He's the only piercer I plan on going back to now. He's professional but very friendly and you can easily relate to him. AND he's got wicked talent.

For anyone who wants a sternum, just do it! It's a great surface piercing and very beautiful. Just be wary if you sleep on your stomach, otherwise the first few nights are pretty uncomfortable, getting used to sleeping on your back (I learnt this the hard way!)


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 23 Jan. 2007
in Surface & Unusual Piercing

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Artist: Matt+Cottrell
Studio: Planet+Ink
Location: Ottawa%2C+ON

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