So the day arrived and I met Brian at the shop. He introduced me around the shop as his girlfriend and told the piercer he was apprenticing under that I was willing to let him pierce my nipple. The piercer thought it was so wonderful and brave of me. I started to get nervous.
I filled out the paperwork, allowed them to make a photocopy of my driver’s license, and waited until Brian was ready. Finally Brian was ready to pierce my tongue. I was a little alarmed when I saw the instruments in packets on a tray similar to one you find at a dentists office. Brian told me to take off my shirt. I did. He grabbed a hold of my breast with his rubber gloved hands and started to clean it off with a paper owl.
He then made a mark with a sharpie marker, one mark on the top, one mark on the bottom. When he picked up the clamps I started to panic. But I couldn’t do or say anything as he had a hold of my nipple. Couldn’t say anything either, so I just closed my eyes while he put the clamps on my nipple.
He then got one of those clip on bibs like you wear at the dentist’s office and put it around me. He said it was to catch the drool. I tried to say fantastic, but it was pretty much a lost cause at that point. He picked up the needle and I started to back up. I fell right into the chair. He laughed and said that was where he needed me to be.
So I tried to say "My, that’s a big needle you’re holding. What are you going to do with it?" It didn’t come out that way. He told me to close my eyes and to count to ten. I did as I was told. When I opened my eyes, I saw this giant needle sticking out of my nipple. I tried to yell at him to no avail.
He quickly pulled the needle through my nipple, inserting the straight barbell at the same time. I looked down and the dentist bib he had put on me now had a puddle of drool on it. Terrific! He took the bib off and told me I was very brave for letting him do that. I punched him in the arm. He gave me a list of aftercare instructions… I glared at him. This was never part of the bargain.
So I had to practice an aftercare routine I was not previously aware of. It’s now years later, and I’m happy to report that I followed the aftercare instructions and I have no problems with my nipple ring. I’ve even gotten more body parts pierced – although not by Brian.
Looking back, I wish I had paid more attention when Brian was telling me about his apprenticeship. I wish I had done research myself, and that I had been better prepared for my first body piercing experience.
Bethie Santry is the author of Your First Tattoo – a top selling tell-all, 12 step guide for everything you need to know BEFORE getting your first tattoo.