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I want something painful... My first cutting.

First of all, I am going to refer to the person who performed this procedure as John (not his real name) for their protection.

Anyway, to start off, I was not planning to get a cutting. The thought had crossed my mind before, but fear of pain among other things had held me back in the past. But on the other hand, this sure wasn't a spur of the moment decision either.

It was my pay day. I went to work to pick up my check stub to see how much money I made. I opened the envelope only to find that my check was a full 50 dollars short. This bothered me because after some quick math, I realized that I would not have enough money for the 4 new nape piercings that I had wanted to get for so long (at least if I wanted to tip also, and tipping isn't an option in my opinion). So I did my laundry, and took it home, and off to Needle Fetish anyway. I was thinking on the whole ride over about things I had wanted for a while, but that wouldn't be as expensive as the 4 piercings. I had thought about 2 horizontal piercings on my upper arm for a long time now. I have seen some staples that looked great, but I wanted piercings. Just four lonely balls up there would have looked really neat.

I got to Needle Fetish and it was early afternoon. I sat on the couch and ran the idea by John. He really didn't think they would stay. I was a bit disappointed. Mind you I had been in the shop 2 days earlier for my 21st birthday. I got my apadravya done that day. It was painful, but you know, I kind of liked it. So after about 20 minutes of bull shitting and talking about various mods, I said, "I want something painful today". I was referring to a piercing. But John told me that my hands, and apadravya (and in my opinion my septum) were the most painful piercings. I didn't have anything left in the painful piercings department that really interested me (other than dydoes, but after a 2 day old apadravya, I think not).

John mentioned cutting and branding. There were people coming in and out this whole time, so our conversations had been interrupted many times. But for some reason, a cutting really sounded like a good idea for the day. They had always intrigued me, and I thought that they looked quite nice (mind you, most people that I have shown it to think it LOOKS killer, but think I am some kind of "sick fuck" as they like to put it to have gotten my arm sliced up with a scalpel. I personally don't find it any more offending than a tattoo, just a different method of decoration.

I still didn't really have an idea what I wanted though. So I sat and doodled on a sticky note for a little while off and on, listening to conversation in the shop, and going outside for a smoke every now and then. I looked at magazines for some inspiration, but that was no good. It seem that I drank a bit too much power aid, and needed to go to the bathroom. They told me theirs was kind of broken, so to go to the coffee shop right next door, so I did. Mind you this coffee shop was an interesting place (I had never been there before), the bathroom was all painted in graffiti like art. It was really cool. I sat down on the toilet to piss out the few small blood clots I might have had stuck in the end (due to my fresh apadravya), and saw the door. There was a huge eye on the door, just staring at me. This stuck in my mind, but I didn't give it a second thought for a little while. I went back to the shop, and followed John around for a bit. He walked out back, which I found was painted a lot like the bathroom at the coffee shop. I was admiring the art, when I notice an eye staring at me from the top center of the wall. This is where things started to fall together.

I ended up settling on two horizontal bars (about 2 inches wide) one above the other, and an eye with simply rays around it below the bars. All this on my left upper arm. I drew a crappy mock up of what I wanted and showed it to John. He got out some paper and started working on it. About 30 minutes later and a few corrections to the final drawing, he applied a transfer to my arm. I looked in the mirror to check the placement and to see how it looked, I loved it. I went outside and smoked one last cigarette as the transfer dried on the skin. It was the longest smoke I ever had. I was talking to a few people that were hanging out at the shop, and it calmed me a bit, and took my mind off of what was to come.

I went back in and walked back into the clean room. John had me stand up so he could fill in a few small lines that didn't transfer well. When he was done with that he had me look in the mirror and verify its placement and everything one more time. Then I got up on the table where the back was in the full upright position and laid back. John asked me if there was anything I wanted to listen to while he cut me. I asked what he had, nothing really appealed to me at the moment, so I told him I would go out to my car to get a CD. I got Tool - Aenima, and brought it back. Someone put it on for me. I think I asked them to turn it up a few times, but it was great. I got very relaxed. I gave John the word to start cutting.

I fail to mention that all the things that he is using are in nice sterile bags, and that they have an autoclave, the room is spotless, John has changed gloves a few times already, he cleaned my arm and all. I overlook this because I am used to the process. I completely trust John's abilities, competence and judgment. At this point in time, I would have trouble going to anyone else, as I trust John so much.

Anyway, the first cut. It was the weirdest feeling. I knew he was cutting, and it hurt quite a bit. But there was also another feeling, quite hard to describe, the feeling of the scalpel as it cut through what felt much like small strings of something in my skin. But a few cuts later, I started to laugh under my breath here and there. By the time he had finished the lower section with the eye and the rays, I was laughing out loud. I don't really know what I laughed so much. But I felt such a release of all the things that bothered me, the inner pain that I had been holding on to for far too long. After the first two or three cuts it is all the same, just the initial shock of the beginning of the cut. I felt such a rush of endorphins as I stared at the ceiling, and the people I allowed in to watch. There were about 4 people that came and went as I got my cutting. I didn't mind. I liked the company, people to look at. I didn't really talk much during the procedure other than to ask for someone to get my drink out of the front of the shop. When John finished the eye and rays, I had a brief break, as he got ready to do the two bars at the top. I asked him if I could go smoke, he told me he wouldn't recommend it, it was a lot easier to get it all done in one sitting. So I said something to the effect of "ok, then lets fuck it up". For some reason it made everyone laugh. And I started to laugh too. John cut around the two bars. The 2-inch cuts where indeed the hardest, my high was now wearing off, and I could feel everything. Then he took the tweezers and peeled off the skin in the bars. The skin removal was not nearly as painful as the cutting. The only thing was the sound of you skin peeling off was unnerving. It is like nothing I had ever heard before. I just tried not to think about the process because in reality it wasn't painful, just kind of disgusting.

This for me was the most symbolic part of the process. I went out with a wonderful girl for 2 years before I moved here to Florida. One month before I was scheduled to leave, she broke up with me. It hurt me like nothing or no one has ever hurt me before. So the skin being removed from me was a symbol, a way of cleansing. It was great, just the thought of the two pieces of skin, one for each year just sitting on a piece of gauze on the tray next to my arm makes me happy to this day. One of the people I allowed to watch wanted me to eat them. But because of what they meant to me. There was no way I was going to eat them. That would totally defy the whole meaning to me. The eye and the rays also have meaning to me, but not near as deep, and nothing I care to talk about here.

By this time it was almost 9 pm (the time the shop closes on Thursdays), so John cleaned me up and bandaged my fresh new wound. He gave me some gauze and tape, and some instructions on how to care for it. He simply told me to remove the scabs in the shower as often as possible to promote scaring.

I went out front, and paid and tipped, and stepped out on the street for another smoke. I had the most wonderful feeling running through me. I felt on top of the world. I had conquered another one of my fears in life. I had also been cut for a reason. The feeling stayed with me as I drove home for an hour, and for days after. It is now almost two weeks later, there is a bit of dry skin in the places that were cut and a few small scabs. I used provon soap and hot water in the shower; it liquefied the scabs so that they could be wiped off (not without pain or bleeding) with a paper towel. I used paper towels because the gooey scabs stuck to it, and I didn't want them all over a towel or a washcloth (it kind of looked gross). I could throw away the paper towels when I was done with them. It is pink and starting to raise. I don't know how it is going to come out. The two bars on the top are still not nearly healed, but that is to be expected as they were much deeper and had the skin removed.

I am very very happy with the outcome of my cutting so far. I am planning to get another soon, on my other arm. I won't recommend it to anyone, your body modification is your decision, I am just here to tell you about mine, what it meant to me, and the process by which I go it.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 17 May 2002
in Scarification

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Artist: %2AJohn%2A
Studio: A+studio...+not+named.
Location: USA

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