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Story of a failed cartilage piercing

I was at the point in my life where I had just left home and wanted to do something that I would not normally have been allowed to have done if I had still lived at home. I decided to get my cartilage pierced after just having second holes in my ears. A lot of girls at university had them and I liked the way that they looked. I chose to have the piercing at a clothing store that also does professional body piercing. I had heard a lot of good things about them so knew it was the place to go.

After walking in the shop a couple of times by myself and chickening out, I managed to get one of my friends to come along with me and she would also get hers done too. We walked to the store the next morning and made a booking for later in the day. After forcing down lunch and feeling very sick and nervous we went back to the store. There were two options as to how the cartilage could be pierced...... $30NZD with a needle and a captive bead ring, or $10NZD with a stud and gun. I chose the needle because I knew it was the better option, and liked the way a ring looked more than a stud. My friend chose the stud just because she could not afford the needle.

After filling out all the forms, showing ID and being given an aftercare sheet, we were lead to the piercing room at the back of the shop. It was white with a huge mirror covering one wall and a chair in the middle. It reminded me of being at the dentist a bit. While me and my friend were waiting nervously the chick who was to be piercing us was sterilizing everything and giving us a lecture on how to care for our new piercings. I had chosen to go first because I was very nervous at this point!! She marked the place on my ear and told me to go and look in the mirror to see if I liked the placement. It was a bit off for my liking so she re-marked me. Second marking was perfect so I sat down in the chair. After looking at the size of the needle I almost ran out of the room, even though I had only chosen a 16 gauge ring. The 14 gauge looked too huge at the time!! I have to say that I am a real wuss when it comes to pain and the thought of a needle going through the cartilage of
my ear made me sweat :P (after a few more piercings though its not as bad)

The piercer had everything ready to go and she told me to breathe deeply and on the count of three she pushed the needle through.....to be honest it was a bit of an anti climax.... The pain was no where near as bad as I thought it would be..... to be honest I barely felt the needle go through...... however when she pushed the jewellery through was a bit painful, but it was very quick. My ear bled a bit but she quickly wiped it away with a cotton bud. My friend was next to have hers done, which was far quicker than mine. While she was getting hers I began to feel light headed and dizzy so ended up lying on the floor before I felt right again. We paid and left.....with my ear throbbing and very red.

I guess the problems with this piercing began as soon as I had it pierced..... the first night I was watching TV and the ball fell out..... panicking I went back to the shop where I had had it done but they were closed. I went to the funk store that also does piercings (though I try to avoid this place as the guy is not very friendly) I got a bit of a telling off for going there when I should have gone to where I had it pierced but he reluctantly put the ball back in place, which was excruciating because he yanked on the ring a bit which was not made any easier with all the dried blood. I went back home but still didn't feel good as the ball was still loose in the ring........ a few days later it fell out again while I was sleeping. Sleeping was very painful and I could not sleep on my left side for weeks and weeks. It kept bleeding when I tried to clean it, though eventually it stopped.

When it finally did show signs of healing, hard lumps formed on either side of the piercing, and no matter how religiously I followed the aftercare they did not go away. For the whole two years I had the piercing it was constantly sore and the lumps seemed they were there to stay. The piercing became especially irritated if I changed the CBR. In the summer time, with encouragement from my mum, I decided to retire the piercing. Even though I did like it, I decided it was not worth the constant pain and cleaning, and my ear seemed to be trying to reject it. When I did take it out I felt naked and lopsided.... I guess it had become so much a part of me that it felt weird to have it gone and I was a bit sad. The holes closed quickly and the lumps disappeared, though there is still a small lump on the back of my ear.

I do not think that the failing of this piercing was due to the place where I had it done, or the aftercare which I followed religiously. I think it was just my body not liking a thick piece of metal in my ear.

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submitted by: Anonymous
on: 02 Nov. 2009
in Ear Piercing

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Location: New+Zealand

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