Let me take you back to a beautiful, Southern California day during the summer break after freshman year. My best friend, Anne, and our friend Dustin were innocently day drinking and window shopping. We excitedly swapped stories of who had the most #blessed first year of college while casually browsing outfit ideas for an upcoming rave. After one or five too many Starbucks passion fruit iced teas and vodka mixed drinks, I was rudely asked to leave. All I had done was loudly proclaim that I could craft a better bra than the ones being sold.
Unfazed, we continued walking around the beach front stores. Dustin pointed out a tattoo shop with a large “25% OFF PIERCINGS” sign. He jokingly dared me to get my nipples pierced. I’m not one to pass up a challenge, especially if it is something stupid and done completely on impulse. I also will do pretty much anything if it means all of the attention will be on me, or in this case, my nipples. I raised my eyebrows at him before chugging the rest of my drink and dramatically throwing down the empty cup. I marched inside and they followed behind in disbelief.
“Come on, Mary,” Dustin called after me. Mary was a nickname given to me in high school, short for Mary Jane and based off of my brief yet unfortunate reggae phase.
“She’s not going to do it,” Anne assured him. Though I could not see her, I could hear her roll her eyes. Well, if I wasn’t going to before, I sure as hell was going to now.
I threw a credit card on the counter and loudly proclaimed my intentions. I handed over my ID, fishing out the real one which I hadn’t used in months, and signed a waiver promising that I was sober (el oh el). Soon my nerves started to kick in. I was out of alcohol and sitting in the waiting area for what seemed like an eternity. Should I run? Sure I had already paid, but what’s a hundred bucks compared to the safety of my nipples? My mind began to recall every time I had been punched in the boob or when a guy bit a little too hard.
“So, um, how much is this going to hurt?” I asked the guy behind the counter, trying my best to sound nonchalant.
“Do you have your navel pierced?”
“Much, much worse than that.” My face dropped and he began to laugh. He explained that the piercing itself doesn’t hurt, but they would be very sore after and suggested taking Midol for a day or two. Simple enough right? Wrong.
Finally, it was time. He led us to a back room and I stripped with empty confidence. Anne sensed my hesitation and rushed to my side. “Just pretend you’re having, like, really kinky sex or something.” She suggested. She was right. I fucking had this. Who knew pain more than me? I’m an unstable mess who drinks four nights a week, practically nothing hurt me more than I’ve accidentally hurt myself.
Unfortunately, no drunk fuck up had prepared me for my tits to be impaled. I screamed. I was wet with blood, sweat, and tears. I looked at Anne helplessly but felt worse to discover her horrified gaze. Dustin broke the silence.
“It looks really good!” He lied.
“Promise?” I sobbed.
“Yeah! So hot. If I were straight, I would so fuck you right now.” I sniffled a few more times and then smiled. What can I say? The boy knew how to cheer me up.
“Are you ready to do the other one?” The piercer asked.
Now, not many people can say that they’ve had their tits stabbed by Satan himself, but in this moment, I was sure that I had. I sat on my hands to keep myself from slapping him on reflex, squeezed my eyes shut and nodded. I felt a terrible pain on my left nipple but I breathed out a sigh of relief. It was finally over. It wasn’t that bad. It was…it was just the clamp. The fucker hadn’t even pierced me yet. I’ll spare you the constant stream of obscenities that flew out of my mouth at the poor guy. But I swear I must have broken some record.
All I can say is this — the piercing itself was absolutely horrid, but the soreness that followed was so, so much worse. Midol my ass. That is the equivalent of tossing a Band-Aid at someone who just broke their leg. I questioned if my body was even capable of feeling that much pain, and was sure that at any moment it would just cut its losses and give out. Something much harder was needed to dull the constant throbbing shooting from my angry nipples. However, the extent of drugs and/or alcohol needed comes with its own potential risks.
After I had been properly medicated, I decided to send out some nudes showcasing my new ~decorated~ boobs. This in itself wouldn’t have been a problem, seeing as it wasn’t anything new. I wasn’t exactly a virgin to the whole naked Shapchat game. This was, however, the first time I had sent any when my boobs looked like they had premiered in a horror film. My piercings made their grand debut as an unattractive, bloody mess. Needless to say, the reactions were less than ideal. Now I love them. But I am still working on blocking out the memory. Only time can heal some wounds..
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