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What I did to my ears last summer

a bright summer afternoon in a sleepy town in California, and I was lying in bed waking up from a very strange dream. I couldn't remember most of it, but one image persistently swirled through my sluggish brain- myself, standing over the bathroom sink, piercing my soft pink earlobes with a needle. Somehow the most satisfying thing in all the world had been, in the dream, to stick that sliver of metal all the way through my earlobe so that it stuck out the other side, gleaming in the feeble bathroom light. I'm weird, I know.
After about 30 seconds of careful sleepy thought, I decided that a good thing to do would be to carry dream out in real life. After all, I had been wanting to get my ears pierced, and it would be pretty cool (I thought) to do it myself. It would be cheap and quick and satisfying, and I could tell the story to everyone and impress all my friends. All I needed was a needle and a pair of earrings, right? I wouldn't even need my parents' permission! (I'm still a young 'un) I went downtown and bought bactine, cotton swabs, some new, shiny sewing needles, and a nice pair of 18 gauge CBR's. Then I went home, boiled a nice thick needle, put some ice in a baggie, and got ready to mutilate my earlobes. A few minutes later I was standing in the studio... er, bathroom, shaking now, gingerly holding my bag of ice with numb fingers up to my ear, wondering why the hell I had decided to do this to myself. My instruments sat menacingly on the damp, bactine-soaked paper towel I put them on, all in a row- needle, CBR's, swabs, extra bactine, paper towels... and a piece of sourdough bread. The bread, a last-minute stroke of genius, was to be wadded up behind my ear as protection for my fingers, so I didn't stab myself with the needle on its exit from my flesh. Wondering if my ear was numb enough, I took the ice away to find that parts of the lobe had gone white. Good, good. Quickly, terrified that feeling would return to the skin, I wadded the bread and stuck it behind my ear, took up the needle in shaking fingers and... quickly, before I could think.... I pushed, feeling almost no pain, just... tearing... and agonizing emotional stress as the needle stretched the backside of the lobe and shot into the bread. It was done! Lightheaded and woozy, I grinned weakly at myself in the mirror. The needle swung gently in my ear, catching the light. I rested for a while before deciding it was time to insert the ring. But how?? I gingerly pushed the needle almost all the way out of my ear, set one end of the ring against the hole and pushed. Nothing. Okaaaay. I took a deep breath and tried again. The needle fell out. Shit! Out with the needle came an oozing of slippery blood, which coated my fingers as I scrabbled frantically to insert the ring. After 10 minutes of coaxing, jabbing, stabbing and prodding at the tiny hole I realized, to my dismay, that there was no way in hell I was going to insert that ring. It was just too big.
A week or so later I tried again, this time with a pair of regular earrings. I pierced the other ear this time, as my first ear was still tender and sore, and I managed to insert the ring halfway. There it stopped. I repeated the whole coaxing, prodding, stabbing procedure once more, but the bloody minded thing just wouldn't go any further. Eventually I tried to force it through and pushed with all my strength, which caused an interesting skin lump but nothing more. Fed up and sore in both ears, I gave up and, a few weeks later, went to a professional, who pierced them expertly in about 10 seconds. Then, it it was time for a stretching. Since I was determined to wear those CBR's I had bought (they were expensive), I realized I needed my ear holes (in which I had been wearing ordinary studs) to be bigger so that the 18 gauge rings could fit through. Luckily, this turned out to be easier than I thought. I lubed 'em up with antibacterial ointment, and gently eased them through. Done! My ears oozed an interesting substance for a while after that, but now they're almost healed. Thus ends my first and only attempt at self piercing. Despite my bad experience I plan to get some more piercings- ear cartilage, nose and maybe eyebrow- after my lobes have healed, if I can afford it (and if I can badger my parents into letting me)! I actually don't regret trying to pierce my own ears, but I can't say I recommend it!

Details

submitted by: Anonymous
on: 16 Oct. 1999
in Ear Piercing

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Artist: Me
Studio: My+bathroom...
Location: California

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