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A Navel Piercing after Year of Contemplation

Since September of 2007, I have been contemplating getting my navel pierced. At the time, it was simply a case where I was itching for a piercing and I needed to get one done in order to satisfy the itch. It was also a case in which I had wanted to get it done somewhere that not everybody would see as I simply enjoyed the whole aspect of having a secret to keep. It was at school, during my first week as a university student, that my friend looked and suggested that I get my navel pierced, seeing as it suited the criteria. At first, I loved the idea, it was perfect and fit the standards that I had wanted. However, it was simply a piercing that was too common. In Jamaica, body modifications are far less common than they are in the US and UK but navel and nose piercings (though only really nostril), had slipped through and joined the list that had helix and lobe piercings. The popularity was something that had soon turned my off from the idea and so I had pushed it to the back of my mind.

By the time April 2008 came around, my itch was returning. At that moment, however, due to a series of events that took place in my life, I wanted a nostril piercing as something symbolic. However, due to a promise that I had made to my mother and the fact that my fiancé frowned when I had told him about it, the idea died within a month.. One night, however, there came a dream about me getting my navel pierced and it was that which sparked the research being done.

I sifted through many forums and websites and stories on BMEzine about navel piercings and, like a good girl, I was very thorough with finding out information on the decision, consequences and aftercare of the piercing. I researched on the type of jewelry that would be best (though unfortunately, what I ultimately wanted – Bioflex/Bioplast – isn't available here) knowing that I have had metal reactions to stainless steel before when I had gotten extra lobe piercings. I decided that it would come down to Titanium or solid gold when the decision arose.

In the weeks coming down to my piercing, I began to change my habits to sort of adapt better when the piercing was done. I took my vitamins (oh how my mother rejoiced), began to be all around more clean and became even more of a germaphobe than I was already. I made sure that I had the antibacterial soap on hand (I use non-scented Dial) as well as made sure that I was stocked with sea salt for those famous soaks.

Over the course of the last 4 – 6 weeks before I had gotten the piercing, I was doing my research to see where my friends or persons I had known with modifications had gotten them done. A friend with an eyebrow piercing and one with a tongue and brand-new tragus okayed Salon Innovation. Of course, I knew of this place because almost everyone I knew with a non-ear piercing had gotten it done at this place. I had been hearing of them since I was around 14 when a close friend at the time had gotten her own navel pierced there. I must have called Salon Innovation (and their two branches) about 5 times during the week and if my friend, Lisa, had been around at the time, I would have had her calling them too. They said that they had the titanium jewelry and that the piercer was only at the Orchid Village branch on Wednesdays. Finally, a Monday evening, I had contacted my friend to ask her to take me there on the upcoming Wednesday so that I could give myself a 4 week late bir thday present.

When the Wednesday came, I was hardly able to keep still as the excitement of getting poked with a thick needle kept me going. I was hardly able to eat anything but after having done my research, I made sure that I had something in my stomach before I went to get poked. On arriving at the parlor I was... disappointed to say the least. The staff wasn't very warm and that alone was enough to begin to turn me off. The piercer (who didn't introduce herself) asked what I wanted done and I told her. Then, she led me in what must have been the smallest room I had ever been into.

The walls of the room had pictures of various body mods done by past customers and that honestly put me at least a LITTLE bit at ease. However, that was where good service began and ended. I glimpsed when she had taken out the needle. I didn't see WHERE the clamps came from. I remained standing. I wasn't marked. I'm not sure she washed her hands before she put the gloves on and right when I was about to change my mind and walk out, I was clamped and the needle was pushed through my skin. I stood there looking down and watched as she had to be pulling me forward because I had stepped back from the fright and due to my skin (I suppose), the needle went in easily but coming out wasn't as nice. To tell the truth, I don't know what actually hurt during the process but I believe it was more the clamps than anything else (despite the trouble). Putting in the jewelry though was a PAIN because –smartly- she was pushing the jewelry in as if it was straight and not curved and t hat HURT. After that, though, she fidgeted to put the ball on and then the solid gold 14K jewelry was in. (Oh.. that titanium jewelry which they had in stock WASN'T in stock).

After that, I paid and left and my friend, Kelly, realized that they hadn't told me any aftercare. I just shook my head, appalled with the service and couldn't even grow any more disgruntled as I was sure that I could have probably told them more about the aftercare than they could have ever told me and when we went to ask, I was proven right. She HAD said the sea salt soak but she also said to put tetracycline on it (WRONG!).

It was about 20 minutes after that the adrenaline rush really came. It felt odd having a piece of metal somewhere it wasn't before and I was painfully (not literally) aware of it for the next 4 hours. As soon as I had gotten home, I did a sea salt soak to soothe the piercing and then had my first look at it.

Despite the hell... I loved it immediately.

A month later, it has been problemless except for some mild itching which I found out after a few days was it getting a bit irritated due to the Dial which I now use maybe one or twice a week. Sea salt soaks are my main aftercare tactic. Other than that, I leave it alone (no tetracycline). It was a bit swollen for the first two weeks. It's only a tiny bit swollen now. There's no pain unless it gets caught on something. The lymph started draining after only a day and a half after I had gotten it pierced. Some days there are more crusties than others but overall, it's been a happy POST-piercing experience despite all the bad things I've read.

I want to get an anti-helix done but I'm gonna wait until I'm out of the country to get it done.

Thanks for reading.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 28 Sept. 2008
in Navel Piercing

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Artist: A+chick
Studio: Salon+Innovation
Location: Orchid+village%2C+Liguanea%2C+Jamaica

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