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first piercing- navel

Ever since I was younger, I was intrigued by body modifications. I used to watch the shows about it on the discovery channel and just knew that some day I was going to start moving in that direction. My family, on the other hand, is very traditional, and my mother especially is very against anything 'unnatural' to the body. Thus, when I turned eighteen, I knew that I was going to start getting the ball rolling, but I also knew that I wanted to take everything slow and just let them accumulate over time, instead of being in a mad rush to cover myself like many other younger people.

After debating where to start for nearly six months, I decided to just go with a navel piercing. It was easy to hide from my family, but something that I could be happy with on my own and show off if I wanted to. It's easier to have a first piercing be something that you can deal with on your own, instead of having anybody and everybody give you advice on how to deal with it.

From the beginning, I knew that I would be getting work done at CowPok in Buffalo, New York. Buffalo has a decent amount of places to get piercings done, as does nearby Niagara Falls, but of everywhere I have ever seen in the area, CowPok is the best. They are very concerned with cleanliness and procedures being done correctly. The owner, Keith, is very involved in the modification community and he also pushes for every professional in the area to become certified and to really do things properly. You couldn't ask for anything better, in my mind.

I went in on a nice afternoon with my best friend for moral support. Chris, who no longer works there, immediately recognized my friend who had gotten her lip done there, and began checking it out, thinking we had come in for some problem with that. When he realized that there was no problem and we were there for other reasons, he began to get serious. I told him that I wanted to have my belly button pierced, and he asked me for my id. After filling out all the paperwork, he asked to see what he was working with. He checked it out, then we moved onto jewelry selection. I was adamant about 'no jewels,' so that made the choice easy, since there was only one type available for piercing without jewels. It was just a plain old curved barbell, without threaded ends. He told us to take a seat and went to prep the room.

I am a very jumpy and nervous person. After sitting there, I was starting to get very antsy and couldn't stop moving around. A short while later, he called us in and began to mark me. I told him that I was starting to get very nervous and that I was not so much afraid of the piercing, but rather that being a jumpy person that I would jump a bit and mess it up. He assured me that this scenario I was describing would not happen, and had me check out the markings. They looked great, so now it was time to do the piercing.

I laid back and held my friend's hand while Chris coached me on my breathing. He was telling me to breathe in and out, then to take a deep breath. I was so concentrated on the breathing to steady my nerves that the next thing that I knew, he's telling me that he's going to put the jewelry in because the piercing is done. Once he had everything screwed in, I got a little too excited and immediately went to touch the jewelry, but got a slap on the hand and a caution to leave it alone.

Chris took me back out front to give me a bottle of Provon for cleaning and to tell me about the care for it. I used Provon for all the care of this piercing, until I got another navel piercing and switched to salt soaks as a cleaning method. After paying and tipping, Chris told me to watch it and to make sure that I came in if there were any problems. He also anticipated that I would need shorter jewelry after the swelling died down.

My healing was long and hard, though, so there were no immediate jewelry changes. I got this done in July- something I would never do again because it kept me out of the pools and off the beach in the few months that it is warm in Buffalo- and it did not stop getting crusty or very red until April. I thought about removing it because it never seemed to heal, but CowPok kept telling me that there didn't really seem to be anything wrong with it except that it was taking its sweet old time to heal.

By the next July, it was finally fully healed! A couple months later, I switched to a corkscrew type piece of jewelry. This worked for a couple months until I began working in a restaurant and the apron was consistently pulling on it. I switched to a ring, and that's what's been there ever since.

This was about 4 years ago, and there has been some grow out since then. The piercing is more forward and to the right than it had originally been, but it's nothing really. I don't think that anybody else even notices, but I can see the difference. This first piercing has been a good predictor of how the others would heal and function for me. My mother did eventually see it, about two years later, and by that time, although infuriated, realized that this was something that she was going to have to be comfortable with because I was going to do it regardless.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 24 April 2008
in Navel Piercing

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Artist: Chris
Studio: CowPok
Location: Buffalo%2C+NY

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