LadyJ's Journal of Bodyart-Related Happenings and Thoughts
Monday, September 24, 2001
I stretched my lobes to 7/16". The right is a little grumpy, so perhaps I shouldn't have stretched it. I was just all gleeful about finally getting the wooden plugs I bought from lish 2 weeks ago. I think they look spifforiffic.
I also redyed my hair and got it cut pretty short last week. I'd have pics up, but my cam keeps crashing my computer. I love it (the hair, not the frequent crashes).
Monday, July 30, 2001
I had my hair dyed.
Okay, that doesn't quite do it.
I dyed my hair burgundy and black!
I am in love with my own goddamned hair.
The chicks at the salon were all excited about the idea, the procedure, and the outcome.
My coworkers were very excited about the plan, and will probably surround me in high-pitched squeals of delight tomorrow.
I spent far too much money on my hair, but I could never have done this myself.
These pictures do not do it justice.
Very happy. That's all. Very happy.
Monday, July 30, 2001
Wow. It's been a while.
I haven't kept up on any kind of exercise regimen, and I've actually gained weight. I'll be doing something about that, but I'm not exactly sure what.
I just got back from rabcon. I did not bring my camera, so pictures will have come from others. I don't recall a lot of pictures being taken, which is just as well since I've gained weight, as I mentioned. I met a few new people, and again got to see and hang out with old friends. I had a great time, and I put 00ga jewelry into my lobes.
Tuesday, January 30, 2001
I haven't Tae Boed again yet. The reason for this is not merely laziness. I twisted my ankle the other day, and it's been excruciatingly bitchy lately. As soon as it starts acting agreeably again, I will pick up where I left off.
I've been thinking lately about my facial jewelry. I've come to the conclusion that I'm bored with the eyebrow ring and tongue bar. I've removed them. I am wavering on the labret stud. I am still entertained by it enough to want to keep it, but without the eyebrow ring to balance it, I think it draws too much attention to the bottom half of my face. I am of the opinion that the upper half is far more attractive to look at than the lower half, so this unnerves me a bit. Also, having no facial jewelry at all would be a better career move than keeping the labret stud. I will keep it until I'm satisfied that the decision to remove it is a final one, because repiercing it once it closed up would increase the likelihood of long-term scarring under my lip, and that would just be completely unattractive.
I'm still happy with my ear jewelry, and will probably stretch my lobes when I can afford to get 2 sets of plugs in the next gauge - one unobtrusive pair for the workplace, and one really shiny set of hollow plugs for my "look @ me" time.
Sunday, January 28, 2001
I started Tae Bo today. "Started" is the operative word. I got about halfway through the instructional video and decided to stop. I'm just not in good enough shape to jump in with both feet. I'll push it further next time. Baby steps. Baby steps.
Monday, January 22, 2001
Judy's barbells got lost in the mail. However, the huge CBR issue seems to have knocked some sense into my nipples, and they're quieting down a bit. I still want to stretch, but it isn't as urgent as before.
I have come to a decision about further tattooing. I will hold off until I have lost weight, and toned up considerable amount. This will prevent me from getting tattoos that will warp later if I lose weight or get a breast reduction, and it will also serve as motivation for getting in shape.
I will be doing Tae Bo at least 3 times a week to start, as soon as the tapes I bought on ebay arrive. I will not be dieting because I am not ready to do a complete 180 in my lifestyle. Also, I have found that when I was active in bike riding and swimming and stuff in the past, my appetite would decrease, and any cravings would tend toward healthier foods. I think this is the most realistic and healthy way to go about this. I will post updates here as I see fit, since I am, in fact, modifying my body (hopefully).
Monday, January 8, 2001
I just put my old 12 ga barbells back in. The CBRs were just too big, and the left one was almost constantly painful, and seemingly beginning to migrate. Judy is sending me a pair of titanium 10 ga barbells, and I'll stretch again when I get them. I hope I didn't do any lasting damage with those honkin' big CBRs.
Wednesday, January 3, 2001
I stretched my nipples to 10 ga with some CBRs I have. My right nipple was crustying way too often, and I couldn't just stretch that one or I'd feel lopsided. I didn't need a taper or anything. The right one went right in with no complaint, and the left required a little gentle pressure at the exit hole to compress the skin and encourage the passage of the jewelry.
I want barbells, but that will have to wait until I can afford them or someone gives me some for free. The rings look weird to me.
Tuesday, November 28, 2000
My nostril screw fell out over the Thanksgiving holiday. I don't really even miss it. *shrug*
Tuesday, October 31, 2000
Wednesday, October 18, 2000
A picture of my back made it into the Detroit Metro Times! I've been tattooed for just about 4 months, and it's already published! Even if the caption on my pic says "Tattoos have become commonplace", I'm giddy.
Thanks to Sarah for writing the article, and to Bethany for taking the pics. Of course, thanks to Patrick for doing such a beautiful tattoo, commonplace though it may be. ;)
Wednesday, October 11, 2000
I got back home in the afternoon 2 days ago. I napped for most of Monday, and then tried to catch up on rec.arts.bodyart. I've still not caught up. Then I decided to just read the rabcon posts, and work on backlog bit by bit as I went along.
I am going to paste my "Rabcon in review" post in just a moment, but first I want to say a few things that I didn't put in the post. For one thing, my nipples do not like niobium, or purple, or cbrs, or some combination of the three. They looked great and seemed happy for about 24 hours after I put the jewelry kate gave me into them, but when I got home they were in agony, so I switched back to my barbells. Also, because of the Anatometal swag I got at Rabcon, I will be stretching my ears to 0000ga.
Now, without further ado, I bring you my post.
Rabcon in Review [LadyJ, 10/10/00 2:32 AM]
Wednesday, October 4, 2000
Tomorrow, I get on a greyhound bus. Except for a few stops, I stay on that bus until Toledo. I then change to another bus, and go to Detroit. This activity lasts for almost 20 hours. Sunday night, I get on a greyhound bus, I ride that bus to Toledo. I get on another bus. I ride that bus (with a few stops) all the way to Nebraska. I exit the bus and wait for my ride home.
Why am I subjecting myself to this torture? RABCON! Rec.arts.bodyarts' yearly shindig. This year it's in Detroit... but it's not about the location (blah blah blah, etc.)
I'll be staying at katester's place. I'll get to see Kate! I'll get to see Heidi! I'll get to see Angie! I'll get to see a bunch of people I've only met in text. I'm jazzed. I'm jazzed enough to subject myself to torture at the hands of Greyhound Lines, Inc.
Anyway, an update about my ear. I tapered my conch back to 4 ga in a hot shower with plenty of soap for lubrication. It went pretty smoothly, but there was that hot, melty, swoony feeling that tapering can cause. Adding the heat of the shower, I suppose I could have passed out... but I didn't.
It's a lot less cranky this time than last, and the swelling is within normal bounds, and not pulling the flare into my ear like last time. I think it will heal well this time (knocking wood).
I've been thinking a lot about my tattoo on my back. I have a few ideas that go in a completely different direction from what I was originally thinking. I have to do a lot more research and think a lot more on it... but I'm starting to think I'll get away from the knotwork for a bit, and put human people in it... a druid and a priestess or something. I really want to research this and not go into it from the level of ignorance on which I am right now. I'll update as my ideas take more shape.
The largish mole that's near the bottom of the knot recently got scratched accidentally, and there was a scab on it. It itched. A lot. I couldn't help scratching at it a bit, and I knocked the scab off. Now, according to Sam's description, it looks like a deflated mole. *shrug*
Tuesday, July 18, 2000
As I last reported, any healing that is still occurring is unremarkable. My tattoo seems to have gone through all the changes I shall see for a good long time (I certainly hope).
The overall appearance of the tattoo is not as vibrant as it was before it started peeling, but that is to be expected, I suppose. It still looks fantastic, and I get compliments on it frequently. Some misguided individuals mistake my patience in allowing them to look at it for willingness to be touched, and I have learned that a preemptive "Sure you can see it, but please don't touch it. I hate that." is suitable for such situations. I've found that the worst offenders of this are sometimes people who have their own tattoos. You'd think they'd be the ones to think twice before touching another person's healing tattoo, but they're not.
Sam took the pictures at the left. The bottom one is a close-up picture of the area where he noticed color loss. The lighter patch is in the top portion, just below the dot on the left. No, not where the space was left for the mole - above and to the right of that. Yeah, there. There was a tenacious scab there which I managed to leave alone for a long time, and accidentally knocked off in a bout of frustrated scratching when the itchies were at their worst. I'll ask Patrick to touch it up when I get more work from him. I already have some plans for expanding the piece.
I think I'm going to want some celtic knotwork in a large V-like shape, flanking the tattoo and terminating at a point below it, above where my bra strap rests... or perhaps instead of one connected V, two angled pieces that would go over my shoulder blade area, V-like, but not connected. I can see using blue, perhaps, in the same shading style. I have to think a lot more about it, but I have plenty of time to think, because another tattoo will not be financially feasible for quite a long while. I do know that I will have to do it in 2 1/2 - 3 hour chunks (from first poke to last, including breaks), or ask the artist to use a good topical anesthetic like sustain, because I am just a wuss and a half after my endorphins wear off.
Bitchass conch update:
I posted to rec.arts.bodyart in passing about my ear's reluctance to heal, and Mimp was kind enough to offer me a 6 ga eyelet she's not using. She's mailing that to me now. I let my ear shrink back down to 6 ga already, and I am wearing the plastic taper with o-rings. When I get the eyelet, I'll wear that and let it get happy and stay that way for a few months before stretching back up to 4 ga. I may be giving some ground, but it could win me the war.
Sunday, July 16, 2000
I haven't been very good about keeping up with documenting the healing process. Ok, I suck. Actually, it's been pretty unremarkable. Since last I wrote here about it, the crackly skin you saw absorbed the moisturizer and sloughed off in barely noticable pieces, much like the last stage of a sunburn, after the major peeling is over. There were a few scabbish pieces, that came off either when I was doing my verboten scratching, or in the normal course of showering, etc. The tattoo is no longer dull-looking, from the dead skin hanging out on top of it. It feels like the rest of my skin, and looks beautiful and vibrant.
I went swimming the other day, since there were no open areas on my tattoo. I slathered waterproof sunblock all over, and kept my back away from the sun. I guess if I get more skin art in other places, I'll have to find an indoor pool, or one that's open later.
I haven't seen photos of my back, but I've inspected most of it in the mirror from odd angles. Sam has also looked very closely at it under good lighting, at my insistence. He thinks there are one or two places where I might have lost a miniscule amount of color, but other than that, it looks perfect. I'm not going to fret about this alleged loss of color. If it took several minutes of scrutiny by someone who's been looking at it every day, no one's going to notice. Next time I get a tattoo by Patrick, I'll ask him to touch up any questionable areas.
Speaking of another tattoo by Patrick, I am already having ideas about expanding the work on my back. I know that's a long, long way down the road, but it's nice that my mind is already coming up with ways to expand upon and improve what I currently have. I have already assured myself that I will have the work done in chunks of time that are less than 3 hours long.
My conch is better than it was when it was bad, but not as happy as it was when I let it drop back a gauge, before I stretched back to 4. I know I should have stayed out of the pool with a healing piercing, but I am weak-willed, and was proud of myself for staying away for the healing period of my tattoo. If I can keep my hands away from my conch for several days at a clip, it might have a chance at healing.
Wednesday, June 28, 2000
Last night in the shower, all of the dead skin came off in huge globs. It was so cool. To his credit, Sam kept the shuddering to a minimum as he sloughed off masses of mushy greenness from my back. However, he just doesn't see the awesomeness of it. Maybe I'm the sick one... but damn! That was fun.
My back is all tight again, though. I think there will likely be at least another round of shedding. Every time I get into a comfortable position, I know that in a short while, I will move and feel my back get all crackly. I've started interchanging the Lubriderm with Body Shop hemp oil. It feels so much nicer than the Lubriderm, but the effects don't last as long, it seems. I've learned to apply the oil/lotion myself, since Sam just isn't around during the day enough. I wonder if his coworkers smell it on him and wonder what he was doing when he went home for lunch... but he claims his coworkers probably won't be able to identify the smell. He's so cute when he's naive.
Tuesday, June 27, 2000
My back is doing the grossest, coolest stuff!
This morning I groggily rolled over and the surface of my back cracked all over. We had moisturized my back well the night before, but I lost a lot of moisture through the shirt I was wearing. My shoulder muscles have been in agony because I was babying the area so much, so I decided to sleep on my back to give my shoulder muscles a break. Sleeping on my side and/or back is generally more comfortable for me, but I also am used to tossing and turning a lot more than I've been doing lately in deference to the ouchy skin. Sleeping on my back, I guess the Lubriderm leeched into my shirt more than into my skin.
Knowing that I would not have Sam's help again until lunchtime, I forced myself to wake up and get in the bathroom for what was probably the 9th shower I've had since before the tattoo. As he washed my back, he noticed that chunks of green seemed to be coming off. I rinsed a little longer and had Sam soap me an extra time or two. When it seemed that all that was coming off was off without pulling or picking, I rinsed a final time and dried off and got the most painful application of Lubriderm yet. Then I went back to sleep to try to forget that pieces of my back were falling off and the lotion was making it sting.
I woke up feeling okay, and Sam gave me another application of Lubriderm at lunchtime. A couple of times this afternoon, I couldn't help putting my fingers there just to feel what was going on. I felt the dead skin, and gently rolled a finger over it. The skin came off with no pulling whatsoever. I sat there examining this Fruity Pebbles looking chunk of my back, marvelling at the weirdness.
Sam helped me take the pictures shown at the left. Well, except for the third one, of which he probably would not have wanted to have a part if I'd even told him about it. Heh.
Cranky conch update:
Sean is making me a longer piece, this time in titanium. If that doesn't do the trick, I'll put in a piece of 6 ga jewelry, and see if that makes it happier. Lish is selling me a 4 ga taper, and when it's happier, I'll taper back up.
Monday, June 26, 2000
My tattoo is done! It looks fabulous!
Sam and I showed up at the shop approximately half an hour early. It was pouring rain, and we decided to stop by the shop before aimlessly wandering around to kill some time. We were both kinda grumpy from walking around a lot, and from waiting in line to get to the top of the Sears tower during a low-to-no visibility moment. We were eager to get out of the rain.
Luckily, when we walked into the shop, Patrick was standing right there, and he was ready to begin. Sam and I went upstairs with Patrick, and watched him clean up his station. We also browsed some of the work in progress on his walls. I immediately identified the prototype for a piece Lish is going to have done, and Patrick and I chatted about Lish's tattoos, Jim Birk's sexual orientation, and other people we know in common for a few minutes while he got his art stuff together.
We talked a bit about what I wanted in the coloring, and what I didn't like about the previous images he'd sent me. I had been concerned that I wouldn't be able to convey to him what I wanted, but once we were actually sitting down and talking face-to-face instead of over email, we ironed it out and he had the coloring right on the first try. We talked about size, and he did a few photocopies. I opted for over 5 inches. When he did the stencil and placed it on my back, we tried to go bigger to accomodate a mole, but then we realized there were at least a few moles on my back, and accomodating them all would have been impossible. We agreed to just tattoo around them and leave a halo of white space for growth detection.
Patrick started setting up his tattooing materials once the stencil was placed properly. He examined all the needles with a magnifying glass, and explained the groupings when I asked to see them. I wasn't trying to second-guess him, and he knew it. I just wanted to understand more about the process, since I was about to have a huge piece of skin art on my back.
I sat there trying very hard not to be nervous. I attempted to soothe myself by examining the cork sculpture I had purchased in Chinatown earlier that day. I was doing okay, but I was a little jittery about the pain.
We were ready to start. Sam sat in front of me, but we couldn't hold hands because Patrick wanted me to stick my hands under my arms to stretch my back as much as possible. When the needles started, I was a little relieved. People always say the outline hurts the worst. "This won't be so bad," I thought.
Within about 5 minutes, I started feeling woozy. I rode it out for a few minutes, and finally asked Patrick to stop so I could have some water. He came back with a Capri Sun juice drink, and I had a nostalgic grade school moment as I brought my sugar level up where it should have been. He assured me that most people get that way when the endorphin rush hits. I was eager to capitalize on said endorphin rush, so we got back to business.
The outline did hurt quite enough. The endorphins took the edge off, I'm sure, but I was conscious of every poke. We stopped a couple of times for a minute, and went right back to it. I asked if we were stopping too much, and Patrick said that as long as the stops were so brief, there was no problem with stopping.
When he finished the outline, it was time for a real break. I asked Sam to run to the store for a milkyway midnight bar. We had seen the ads in the subway, and the advertising did its job. I was obsessing about them. We started with the coloring before Sam returned.
Sam returned without a milkyway midnight bar, but that was okay, because the coloring was hurting much less than the outline and I was feeling like this would be a piece of cake. Sam did bring some Hershey's Special Dark and regular milkyway. He fed me little pieces of chocolate while I was being tattooed, because I wasn't supposed to move my arms. He also brought me juice, for which I was very grateful during breaks.
After a little while, the tattooing started hurting a lot more. The endorphins were wearing off, and I wanted to know how long I had to go. Patrick said we were about a fifth done with the coloring. My reaction was silent, but obvious. Gradually, the pain became worse and worse, especially when Patrick went back over previously tattooed area to add another color. I started having trouble breathing, and Patrick would tell me to breathe in before touching the needles to me, and coax me to breathe out slowly as he did a section. He did that a few times until I was back on track, but soon afterwards, my eyes were tearing up.
I was starting to panic because it was hurting so badly, and my body was telling me to panic. Also, I was worried that I would not be able to endure all the coloring, but I was determined not to have half a tattoo. Between the chemical and physiological issues in my body, and the possibility of having to go home with half a tattoo, I started crying. Patrick said he wanted to finish up a couple of sections, and then we'd stop for a break. I felt so much relief at the word "break" that my tears went away, and I single-mindedly endured the rest.
We had been chatting offhandedly earlier about Emla cream and how it works. He mentioned that one of his colleagues uses this stuff called Sustain. Sam was asking if Patrick could use that stuff on me, and I was too beaten to argue. I wanted to experience the whole experience, but damn... I tried that and it was kicking my ass. Patrick said he didn't have any of that, but he went downstairs to look for something while I stood in front of the mirror, looking at my half-a-tattoo and trying not to cry anymore.
He came back up with a sample jar of a topical anesthetic called Zap. It has benzocaine in it. He said it has to be applied every 15 or so minutes, but it only has to sit for a minute or two, as opposed to the hours that Sustain requires. I was so relieved, and even moreso when Patrick said that he would not have finished that night if he hadn't found some topical anesthetic. He said he has a moral dilemma tattooing a weeping person. Sam said he would have sold his TV to fund another trip to Chicago for me to finish the tattoo, if that's what it had taken. He was in agony watching me suffer. I had to admit to myself that I would not have been able to take much more... but there's this insistently butch part of me that keeps saying I would have endured anyway. She might be right. It's moot, 'cause I went the wussy way and loved it.
That Zap stuff was awesome. It didn't take away all the pain, but it took the edge off. It got me through the remaining hour and a half or so of coloring. Each application was slightly less effective, but it was good enough to get me through. I'm sure it also helped when people from the shop came up and chatted a bit. Those moments went by a lot more quickly.
Finally, close to midnight, we were done. I had been in the shop nearly 6 hours, and spent approximately 4 - 4 1/2 hours under the needle. Patrick and Perry agreed that the anesthetic wasn't *that* wussy, since it was an ambitious first piece. I don't know if they just said it to make me feel better or if they meant it, and I didn't care. I was just relieved to be done, and pleased as hell with the outcome. Patrick cleaned me up, took some pictures, and covered me with saran wrap. We had discussed aftercare during one of the breaks, but he went back over it again.
We went downstairs to settle up, and I got a Body Basics/Patrick Cornolo t-shirt. I invited Patrick to come to Cesar's with us for kickass margaritas, but he declined. I mentioned for the third or fourth time what a punkass beeyotch Jim Birk is for not meeting me at the shop, and Patrick concurred. We said our goodbyes, and I assured Patrick that I'd be raving about him on my site.
Patrick kicks all kinds of ass. He was patient, and he is skilled, and he is fun to talk to. His use of color is amazing, and he does have a light touch, despite my inability to deal with what pain there was. I highly recommend Patrick Cornolo to anyone, especially for a first tattoo.
I also want to thank Leth for helping me come up with the concept for the coloring, and my sister for helping me pick the knot, and Sam for being so fantastic to me during the procedure (continuing through the aftercare, which is still going on), and various other friends for listening to me blab about it, and for giving me ideas and feedback. This tattoo was pretty much a community effort.
We got back to where we were staying, after margaritas and shots. We were both giggly and silly. We got to bed really late. The next morning, I woke up with the saran wrap all bunched on one shoulder blade, but the tattoo looked fantastic. There was a little lymphy stuff at the top where the most movement happens, but otherwise it looked completely intact. I had Sam help me apply antibacterial soap a few times and I rinsed it well, and he blotted it with paper towels.
At one point on the drive home, we stopped at a rest stop and washed my back, getting my skirt all wet. After that washing, I had him put some lotion on, because it was feeling tight. Last night I took another shower, with Sam's help reaching the parts of the tattoo I can't reach. He put more lotion on, and again this morning before he left for work. It feels great now, but I dread the itchy stage to come!
Unrelated to the tattoo:
My conch is still extremely cranky. I think it's doing that to give me good healing karma for the tattoo. I almost had to abandon it the other day when I took the jewelry out for a second to look at it, but Sam shoved it through at my request. He was so cool about it. He didn't think about what he was actually doing until afterwards. He only knew that every second of hesitation would make it hurt worse for me. He's so awesome.
I'm going to take Sean up on his offer to make me another, longer custom piece. If that doesn't work, I guess I'll abandon it and have a big ugly pucker in my cartilage. I suppose I can have it repunched another time... maybe it will do better on a second try, once it's all healed... I hope the longer jewelry does the trick so I don't have to find out.
Wednesday, June 21, 2000
Sam and I are preparing at this moment to embark upon our trip to Chicago. In approximately 90 hours, I will be reminding myself through the searing pain that I chose to be there. I'm so excited!
My dermalled ear is really, extremely cranky. Sean Christian at Anatometal made me a custom tube for it, but it's still pinching and unhappy. If it is still bitchy when I get back from my trip, Sean says he'll make me a longer piece.
Thursday, June 8, 2000
After banging my head against a wall trying to figure out what style of coloring and shading my tattoo-to-be was going to have, and being frustrated by my inability to execute the concepts that did pop into my head, I finally asked for help. Yesterday, I asked my friends on #spinnwebe to help me out. I know that some of them are quite artistic (though I swear some are autistic, as well) and I hoped at least a few of them would enjoy the challenge of trying to find a design I liked.
Several people did bite, and you can see some of their ideas here.
Leth came up with the design you see at the left. I love it because it looks kind of carved into the background, which will of course be my skin. I've asked Patrick to take a stab (so to speak) at enhancing this scrimshaw effect.
The knot was chosen about a month ago, after a long, drawn-out email volley with my sister. She is getting the same knot in the same place on her body, but hers will likely be blackwork, and smaller than what I have planned.
The design will be approximately 5 inches in diameter, and it will be on my upper back, in the center. My appointment is at 6:30 PM on June 24th at Body Basics, in Chicago. Patrick Cornolo is the artist. When he sends me a final version of the art, I'll post it here.
Sunday, June 4, 2000
A few days ago, I lost my nostril screw. I had a backup in the car, but I didn't hurry and get it because I've always had mixed feelings about the nostril piercing. It's like a least favorite child. I figured if it stayed open on its own, cool. If not... well I *do* have 13 other children to take care of, and more on the way, ya know? In any event, I found the jewelry later (with the bottom of my foot, goddamnit) and got it back in with a mild "pop" on the inside, and it's living happily with its brothers and sisters.
The hole I had punched in my conch has been grouchy of late. Part of it is due to the pick-pick-pick method of healing, certainly... but most of it is due to the fact that I've been sick as a dog all week. I'm still sick, but my ear is starting to feel better. It got smooshed really hard yesterday by an overzealous cuddler. George felt really bad, and I assured him I was fine after I was done screaming in agony. Today, I told him for sure it was all cool, because I think he helped knock some sense into it. I've read accounts before on rec.arts.bodyart that grumpy piercings have sometimes begun to behave themselves after getting knocked around accidentally. Now I can add an AOL-like "me too!"
Tuesday, May 16, 2000
Pick, pick, pick. Ooze, ooze, ooze. This is so much fun!!! Gawd, I'm gross.
I woke up sleeping on my left side, and my ear was fine. I don't think showering tonight will be any problem. I wonder how rollercoaster riding on Saturday will be.
Monday, May 15, 2000, Part II
Keeee-rist that was painful! It was also way cool. I was the last appointment of the day and everyone wanted to watch the procedure. Everyone stood around oohing and ahhing and just creating awesome vibes. Heidi wasn't there for hand holding, but Derek let me squoosh together his metacarpals.
I was asked to liken the pain to another experience, and I really can't... it was mostly fear of the pressure, and anticipation, and the fact that it took way way longer than a typical piercing. It was crunchy and hot and agonizing, but to be honest, I think stretching my lobes from 4 ga to 2 ga hurt worse.
On the way home, in the car, I sneezed a little too violently and it started bleeding all over my shirt. I came in the door and my landlady looked concerned. It was really very amusing, actually.
Jesika took some pics during the procedure, but I snapped the webcam pics you see to the left for your perusal until I have crisper ones.
My hair is all bloody and matted and I can't really wash it (for fear of annoying the piercing) until tomorrow night. Hopefully most of the blood will brush right out tomorrow morning. Heh.
Monday, May 15, 2000
I called up BWP today, originally intending to make an appointment to pick up a smaller nostril screw and have it custom fit tonight after work. Somehow, when the voice on the other end greeted me, I found my mouth asking if there were any appointments open at 7:30 tonight. When the voice told me that I had pretty much my choice of piercer, I found my mouth asking if David Vidra could dermal punch my conch tonight. I now have an appointment to have the aforementioned procedure performed by David Vidra at 7:30 PM. Heidi may be able to show up and hold my hand, but then again she may not be able to (eep!).
I'm changing the section on my main bodyart page about my planned mods. My sister and I have been talking for the last few months about getting matching tattoos. We're trying to agree on a celtic knot, and we're going to have the same knot done in the same place (upper-middle back) by different artists, in different styles. I'm extremely excited about that, and I have an appointment on June 24th with Patrick Cornolo at Body Basics in Chicago, IL.
Tuesday, March 14, 2000
I spent last night and today stretching my earlobes from 2 ga to 00 ga so I could get my 0 ga, double-flared ear gems through. My lobes are on fire right now. The ear gems are really pretty. I can see staying at 0 for a long time with this jewelry.
I've been thinking recently about abandoning my nostril screw. I woke up one morning with it missing and didn't notice until the afternoon. When I put in the replacement, it looked weird to me. Maybe my previous notion about not highlighting my nose with jewelry was a good one. I'll think some more before letting the hole close, though.
The update on my nipple piercings is that they're settling in and seem to be pretty happy. They still get lymph crusties, but that's decreasing a lot. There seems to be no migration, and I haven't caught them on anything. I did brush one painfully against the edge of a table when I leaned across it to reach for something, but that was an isolated incident.
Tuesday, January 18, 2000
I just got back from the Big January Chicago Munch last night. I got to hang out with a lot of groovy people from rec.arts.bodyart. On Sunday night, a bunch of us decided to stretch our ear lobes at the same time. I have mine at 2 gauge now (what a bitch of a stretch!), and I have the eyelets in them that Judith Grunberger gave me. They're a bit nicked up, so I may look for nicer jewelry, since I'll probably be at this gauge for a while. Maybe I'll get some heavy CBRs, and let gravity do most of the stretching for me for the next jump.
After seeing amY's ears again, I'm really thinking about ear projects now. I still want my conch dermal punched, but I think I'll have it punched at 4 or 2 instead of the 8 I was previously considering. I'm going to ask David Vidra if he'll do it, partially because he has more experience with a punch and I'm nervous, and partially because I haven't been poked by him yet (hush now) and I want to experience that. I also want an industrial on my left ear, I think. I may do the conch next, instead of the tongue. Maybe not. Argh! If I had unlimited funds, I'd do it all in one go, as soon as I could get an appointment.
Wednesday, January 12, 2000
I must admit that I'm not being too terribly successful with the leave 'em alone method. I don't mean that my nipples aren't healing well; they're coming along excellently. I mean I'm not particularly good at leaving them alone. I just cannot resist picking at crusties. I'm the same way with pimples. I have to poke, pop, pick, and prod. I'm a fidget.
Anyway, like I said, the nipples are doing great, especially considering that I had the flu and ran a fever last week and have been just generally under the weather since then. The right piercing is a little weepy, but from all the stories I read on rec.arts.bodyart, that's to be expected on occasion during the first handful of months, at least. Besides the discharge on the right one, there is some dryness of the skin on both, but that's about it. They're behaving really well, and I don't catch them on the shower curtain anymore.
My labret, however, worries me a little. The flesh tube inside the piercing is taking a long time to look normal. None of my other piercings look so semi-healed after so long, but I guess that's also because the others don't get abused as much. I took the jewelry out for a minute to see how noticable the hole is, and it's pretty damned noticable. Essentially, I have to make it work, or live with a scar below my lip. Oh well. I knew the risks going in. I still love my labret.
On the ear-stretching front, I'm going to take another whack at stretching when I can find a really long, really gradual taper. The ersatz stuff I tried was too severely tapered, and the exit hole was not big enough to accomodate the 2 gauge eyelet.
Tuesday, December 28, 1999
I managed not to catch either of them on anything all day yesterday, nor have I caught them on anything so far this morning (knocking on wood). The left one seems to be playing a tiny set of bongo drums somewhere inside my breast, and the right one is sleeping.
Sunday, December 26, 1999
Well, so far I've caught the end of the left barbell on the lace part of my shower curtain once, and have bumped and caught both at various times through my clothes. I seem to keep forgetting they're there until I do something that reminds me.
They're behaving very well, and I hope they continue to do so. I'm healing them pretty much through the leave 'em alone method. I wash them when I'm in the shower, and ignore them the rest of the time. So far, so good. If they get grouchy for any reason (like one of the 800 times I catch them on something), I'll soak the unhappy one in sea salt solution.
Thursday, December 23, 1999, Part II
It's done!! My nipples are pierced!
I was so nervous, both about the pain, and about sitting in a room topless while Derek prodded and marked my nipples. I was so tense that I'm sure my eyebrows looked permanently furrowed to anyone who might have looked at my face this evening. I got to BWP early and things were slow so by the time I was done with paperwork, Derek was ready for me.
I went into the piercing room and sat down. Derek asked if I had any questions, and we briefly discussed things. I've heard the whole pre-piercing spiel from Derek many times at this point, what with not only being present for my own piercings, but those of friends like Heidi and Kate. Derek stepped out so that I could remove my shirt and bra in privacy, and I sat there clutching them in my lap for what seemed like 8 years. Derek came back in and washed his hands and put on his gloves and we chatted and he made me feel comfortable. He spent a very long time marking and making sure he was happy with the marks, and then went to get Jesika so that she could check his marks while he got the jewelry together.
Jesika came in and checked the marks and measurements, and made a minor adjustment, and then it was time. After what seemed like days, the forceps were clamped on, and Derek was telling me to breathe in and let it out, and breathe in again. Then there was a pain in both nipples that felt like um, well... at the risk of being corny, one singular sensation... and I expelled my breath with a "Haaaaaaaah." Derek told me to breathe in again, and then the jewelry went through. Derek and Jesika were perfectly synchronized from what I could tell, and for that I am very, very glad.
It was over. I felt like a doofus for being so nervous about the whole thing, and I stared at the acoustic tiles and mused about how I could barely feel them. Derek asked if I wanted the mirror, and I looked at the new jewelry. Then I was left alone to take as long as I needed to get my head together (and my clothes), and join them outside.
I felt fantastic, so I chanced standing up. I was not nearly as lightheaded as I'd been after my lip piercing, and I could barely feel the new hardware. I got dressed and went outside. I told Derek and Jesika that I would be right back and ran out to my car. I had purchased them gifts because I hate tipping cash to piercers with whom I'm friends (which pretty much means all piercers, because there is no reason for me not to be pierced by friends anymore. I know plenty of them.) and I wanted to get something nice for them. I brought in the two bottles of champagne and wished them both a Happy New Year. Then I initialed the paperwork and hugged them both.
Just before I left I remembered that I wanted to have Derek take a look at my tongue and tell me whether a second tongue piercing would be possible. He brought me back into the room and we played Simon Says for a minute or so as he examined my tongue from different angles. He said he's pretty sure it will be possible. Well, now it's officially my next planned mod!
The drive home was uneventful until I hit a rough patch of road, at which point I got a taste of the sensations that are in store for me for the next few weeks to several months. This should be interesting!
Footnote: after rereading this, I realize I'm still high on endorphins. I'm tempted to go through and fix the run-on sentences, but I think I'll leave them be. They really help describe how I feel.
Thursday, December 23, 1999
Oooh, I'm so nervous. I got Christmas money in the mail from mom, so I called BWP and made an appointment to get my nipples pierced tonight. To compound my nervousness, Heidi (my regular designated hand-holder) is not even in town.
Wednesday, December 22, 1999
As I posted to rec.arts.bodyart:
Monday, December 20, 1999
I got it in my head recently that I want a second tongue bar behind the one I currently have. I don't know if this is perhaps a bad idea, since I already occasionally feel like I have too much metal in there, but it's something I feel I want to try. Perhaps I'll downsize my current barbell, or at least the balls.
Tuesday, December 14, 1999
To date, I have the following:
Now, this may look a lot like the list on my main bodyart page, but this one is a static representation of what I have as of this date, and the one on the main page evolves to reflect the changes I make.
The picture to the left is the first procedural picture that was ever taken of me getting pierced. That was my second piercing, not counting my mall-gunned ears. It was the first of three times that I've had my tongue pierced.
Okay, now to the latest info. This weekend, I accompanied Kate Pohjola to Body Work Productions, where she got her nipples pierced. I have since been obsessing over the idea of getting mine done. I had thought a lot about it in the past, but discarded the idea because I don't like my breasts very much. Kate says that having the jewelry really has a positive effect on her self-image, and I can see how it would. As soon as I have the cash, I'm headed to BWP so Derek and Jesika can stick needles through my nipples... I think. Heh.
Yesterday, I tried stretching my lobes to 2 ga without tapers. I thought that playing with the jewelry for the last few weeks would be enough to loosen them up, but the jump from 4 to 2 is too big, apparently. The trauma of trying to do it has set me back a bit, too. My lobes are a bit angry. I'll leave the 4 gauge jewelry in there for a while, and play with the jewelry some more. I'll also look for a taper, or a cheap approximation thereof.
My 3rd lobe hole on my right ear is still angry and crusty. I recently put a 14 gauge spiral captive bead ring in where an 18 gauge regular CBR had been in the orbital between the 2nd and 3rd holes on my right ear. I thought that the diameter of the new ring is technically the same, but that the additional thickness of the jewelry and the fact that it's a spiral may have something to do with my ear not liking it. The 2nd hole has quieted down, seemingly accepting its lot in life, and I'm determined to beat that 3rd hole into submission. The twin to that piece of jewelry went in without a struggle on my left ear, but that isn't an orbital.