Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Oh, ouch.

A dear friend sent me a picture message just recently, showing off her brand-spanking-new microdermal piercings. On the back of her neck. Yes, my invisible pal, you read that correctly. On the back of her neck.

Now, before you shriek and run away, or turn a delicate, pale green, like the fragile leaves of spring, let me tell you a tiny bit of the information she shared with me. A tiny bit, don't be scared. I won't go on and on.

Was that an eyeroll? Mmm. I see. I'll let it go this time, but if it happens again, I might have to unleash The Look. You know what I'm talking about. Yes, you do. Yes, you do!

Anyway. Piercings.

Evidently, a microdermal piercing is a little different than the usual kind; the puncturing jewelry doesn't go in to one bit of skin and out another. No, no. One end gets rammed into the skin and then that end is screwed into a bit that lives under the skin. At least, I think this is what my friend told me. It's difficult to be sure, as I was screaming and rocking back and forth while she described this to me.

No, I wasn't really doing that. Ha ha ha.... I would never--okay, it was close. I nearly did that.

But back to my friend. She survived her piercing experience, has two new pieces of body jewelry [which makes her very happy] and claims she's done with getting any more piercings for a while. As I have seen the additional body jewelry she does sport, I had this to say in response:

Uh huh. Sure. No, I believe you.

Now, I appreciate that this is something my dear friend loves to do. And it is her body. I'm not judging. It's just that I have a different frame of reference. I look at piercings and tattoos and scarification and making the holes of piercings bigger and all I can think is OWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But that's me. [Dreadful grammar, I know.]

On a daily basis, people who come into my lab to have blood drawn inform me, in dire tones, that they do not like needles. As if this might be news to me. As if I expect them to like it. Who likes getting blood drawn? And would we want to know them?

I think not.

There are people who don't mind the process, I admit it. Delightful creatures. But nobody actually likes it. What amazes me, however, are the people who inform me of their distaste of the process...while dripping piercings and being covered with tattoos. At this point, I am less sympathetic than usual.

Patient: I'm not very good at this.
Me [after spotting a full "sleeve" of tattoos]: Really?
Patient: Yes. I can't stand needles.
Me: Uh huh. And this was done with Magic Marker?
Patient: Well, no, but it's different.

Yes, it is different. I stick the tip of one sterile, single-use needle into a vein, blood flows out, and voila! We're done. Your average tattoo artist repeatedly injects ink into skin, sometimes using bundles of needles, in a process that can take hours. Different. Yes.

I'm not saying blood draws don't skeeve me out as much as the next person. I'm a wuss. I admit it. I was 35 when I got my ears pierced. Roommate forced me to come to the mall--well, okay, not forced. But she insisted. They gave me a teddy bear to hold. Roommate held my other hand [later claiming I "nearly broke" her hand---pfft!] and a six year old, in the store with her mother looked at me as if to say, "Jesus, lady. Get it together." It was mortifying. It was painful. And I will never, ever, EVER get anything else pierced in my life, much less anything tattooed. I would rather get blood drawn any day.

Microdermal piercing. [shudder] Really? Gah.


  1. I'm reminded of my reaction when a housemate flashed me a look at his brand-new (I was going to say spanking-new, but...) nipple rings. He was grinning.

    That was maybe ten years ago. I still shudder.

  2. ....I occasionally say if the person seems jovial, "I am clinically allowed to make fun of you now..." to the above mentioned person who has full sleeves of tattoes & quails at a blood draw!

  3. Oh Lisa... you do amuse me. The act of drawing blood does tend to bring out odd reactions in some folks, to be sure. Don't really understand the whole piercing thing, just happy I don't have to worry about my nipple piercings showing through my scrubs while at work!!