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[Warning - adult content]
I've been thinking alot lately about having my hood pierced. I've been feeling as if I'm a bit numb down there lately. Plus, I've thought off and on for several years, that I would really like to adorn my little flower. The thing is, I'm afraid. Of so many things. I probably shouldn't delineate them too much, since that might bring them more into concrete reality.
So, what I'd really like is a VCH, a vertical hood piercing, with a pearl in it. You know, kind of like a clamshell. Heh. Or maybe a piece of rose quartz, or aquamarine. Nah, probably a pearl. And eventually I'd like a horizontal piercing over that one. I'm not at all interested in the Triangular Clitoral piercing, which is the one that goes through the clitoris. No Way! I'm not built for it either. I just want one primarily for decoration, and I'd like to have some ease of movement, so I'm thinking the VCH would be best overall. You can check out what they look like at The-Clitoris.com.
So when I get ready to do it, my friend Moon said that she would do it for me. She's been a certified body piercer for over 7 years. I think it's time to have a woman do my piercing. All the others have been done by a guy friend of mine, Stan. Moon says that she had a woman who was raped come in for the hood piercing, as a way to reclaim her vagina back for herself. I just think that is so cool! It's like 'penetrating' yourself, and doing it right.
Myself, like a lot of women, I find that my childhood was peppered with too many admonitions not to touch oneself there, that it was dirty, blah, blah, blah. My mom never said this, my grandma did. It'd be nice to treat it like the flower of life that it is. I'm just a big "pussy" when it comes to pain. Pun intended. Hah, ha! Yet, the idea of having a woman do the piercing, when my ability to trust women lies at the heart of it, would probably be a good thing. Even though I've had some bad experiences with men, I actually trust them more (it's not rational), and so I'd like to trust a woman to do my piercing. I'd like to reclaim my flower back from the painful history of the matriarchs in my family.
I'd really like my friend Ashley to be there, just simply because I'd like someone in the room who isn't either getting pierced or doing the piercing. Somehow, I think if it is a social gathering of sorts, it will be very healing. I'm thinking of chilling out afterwards, using gemstones to work through any anxieties, and maybe a little Reiki to ease the transition. Some cups of tea, and some Girl Scout cookies as a treat. You know like a slumber party with some minor surgery thrown in.
Some of the girlfriends I have now say that they've been alot like me, in that most of their friends have been men, because of trust issues with women. I think I trust Moon and Ashley enough to be like the best sisters I've ever had. I just want this to be a really healing experience.
I don't want to do this right away. I want some time to search for the right piece of jewelry, and time to ease through some more transitions that I'm making in my life right now. I'm thinking sometime in August? I thought about my nose piercing and my navel piercing for some time before getting them. My tragus piercing was spur of the moment, and that was very painful. So, I'd like to take the next few months to mull it over. When I find the right piece of jewelry, I think that will cement the idea in my mind more.
By the way, my ??? is not whether I should do this or not, because I think that I shall...my ??? is to ask anyone who has had it done, what the experience was like for them? So, I'm curious, before I go, to hear anyone's good experiences with hood piercings? I'd love to hear if it changed anyone's life for the better. *perks up ears*
If mountain goats like living at high elevations, why do none live in high rise apartment buildings?
This post was edited by null on Mar 22, 2006.
Okay, I can't edit the above post, but I wouldn't want to...it stands on it's own. What I wanted to say additionally though, needs to be directly connected to it--like a subtext within a chapter of my life.
I couldn't quite find the words for what I wanted to say in that post. And yet, earlier today, I happened upon one of the two books that I bought for no apparent reason at all, right before my Mom was diagnosed with cancer. The first book was called: Motherless Daughers. The second was Close to the Bone: Life-Threatening Illness and the Search for Meaning, by Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D. It is from this latter text, that the book fell open today to p.168.
Post-Surgery Rituals of Transformation
The tumor was removed before it had progressed into malignancy. Anthea did get what remained of what had been excised from her colon (even if it seemed a most peculiar request), and in a private ritual moment, she buried it in the garden of her family home. Her tumor symbolized or concretized negativity, unacceptability, and rejection of deep parts of herself that she had experienced from her family and internalized.
Her ritual followed the example of a childless woman who had had a hysterectomy while she wsa still in her childbearing years. The loss of a uterus that has never carried a child removes the possibility and dream of ever being a biological mother. For the soul, there is a need to mourn that loss. A ritual done with friends is a way of expressing the loss that contributes to healing it. Anthea's friend obtained her uterus after the hysterectomy. With a ritual involving the caring participation of close friends, she buried it ( and the possibility of having a child) and planted a tree over the site of the burial, so that as it became part of the earth, its molecules would in turn become part of the tree; dead tissue that was once her uterus would be transformed into new life. The ritual marked an end and a hoped-for new beginning.
These posthospitalization rituals were symbolic acts meant to invoke change in the person; the intention was transformation of pain and loss into new life. Rituals such as these are symbolic enactments or dramatizations of loss as a part of ongoing life. To ritualize loss is to tap into the realm of dreams and myths, which mark transitions in the language of death and rebirth, where burial is a precursor to renewal, resurrection, or the promise that in time, spring will return. As part of a healing process for the soul, burying the actual tissue that was removed is not necessary -- for some people it may make the ritual more significant; for others even the idea is distasteful. Instead, an object that symbolizes the loss is chosen or made, and it is held and imbued with personal significance and meaning.
In the symbolic layer of the collective unconscious, the ways that humans from the beginning of time have marked the end of life as a transition into the otherworld become a metaphor for endings and beginnings. Metaphor evokes images and archetypal meaning, which ritual taps into. To consign a symbol to the earth, into the sea, into the fire, or to leave it to the elements in the branches of a tree, are easily incorporated into personal rituals because they are not made up but come up out of the soul.
A nurse-therapist who had had surgery and chemotherapy for breast cancer the previous year came to San Salvador Island in the Bahamas to a women's workshop I was leading. She came with the intention of doing a ritual. She had heard me speak of what my freind Anthea had done, and had come to do something similar. There was a long expanse of empty, private beach, with indigenous scrub growth above it. In the circle preceding, she told of the cancer in the context of her life, what she had been through since the diagnosis, and of her intention to leave her cancer and what it represented to her behind. She thought that she would give it ritually to the sea. Then, as we gathered with her on the beach, she had a moment of deep truth, which made her cry. She couldn't do it yet. She could not bring herself to take what she had brought and physically cast it into the ocean. This was the truth of it. What she had thought she would do came up against unexpected deeper feelings: A No! made itself felt. Her mind had planned something that her soul knew was premature. Significant ritual and deep truth go together. Ritual is not a made-up, let's-pretend game to play. It truly does engage us, body and soul.
At such times, it is a matter of asking questions of the soul, until what is right for this particular person emerges. I asked her if she needed to return home with what she had brought with her. A clear "No!" was the response. Answers to further questions revealed that it was a matter of time. At some point in the past, she had wanted to die, and the cancer seemed to be an expression of this. Now, she was moving toward and affirmation of life, and she was making changes in her life, but she was not quite ready to embrace life and give up being a patient. Ritually what was right -- inner gnosis, right -- for her, was burial several feet deep, at the waterline. There, below the surface and in the dark, sand and water and time would work upon its dissolution; gradually inevitably it would be transformed. When the proposed ritual act conformed to what her psyche knew was true for her, she could go ahead. The small ceremonial burial she performed for herself, with us participating as witnesses, was intense and powerful, and above all, meaningful.
It's so hard to let go of things. Even things that are bad for us. It's hard to let go of old patterns of action, of old belief-systems. It's hard to let go of our pain...but today, when I read those words, I realized two things.
I realized that my mother's cancer grew because her anger fed it. Anger is one of the key ingredients for cancer. Internalized anger. Fortunately for me, my anger has been 'externalized'. In talking with zen, and remembering the things I wish I had done during my mother's trial by cancer, I realized that so much more was tied up in those seminal years. I had, in much the same way she had done, utterly negated my reproductive organs. For my mother, just as Jean Shinoda Bolen said of her friend Anthea:
Her tumor symbolized or concretized negativity, unacceptability, and rejection of deep parts of herself that she had experienced from her family and internalized.
And for me, to paraphrase, my vagina, labia and clitoris, my uterus, my fallopian tubes, my ovaries symbolize every bit of negativity I've experienced; I've let them become symbols of that. I've rejected them. They have become the scapegoats of my body. But I can't function very well without them, so instead of letting my anger progress as my mother's did, I am choosing to try so very hard to heal it; to let that need to be angry and to hate people and things and body parts.... Go. To love my little coochie so that it can remain whole and intact, albeit with some jewelry adorning it. I want to bring it back into my life as something transformed and whole once again, as it was the day I was born. Something inviolable. Something beautiful and loved, like a newborn baby.
This is so that not only it can heal, but my soul can heal. Completely. To anyone who can resonate clearly with my words, I give my encouragement as well. For me, this piercing will symbolize everything I have just said. For someone else, the way to accept the heart of their creative aspect may be something else entirely. Or they may have to end up burying their uterus, or their tumor. Or just realize that their illness can actually be a manifestation of a hatred toward themselves and making peace with that, or that it may have progessed so far that it cannot be cured and they must learn to ease their path toward death, and acceptance of death. Or else a miracle might happen, and they may need to come to terms with that miracle like a prisoner on death row expecting to die has to come to terms with a Presidential pardon or a stay of execution. It's a new way of being, that even if it is good, needs ritual to cement it into your psyche. Any of these ways, the ritual is transformative.
And for those that have never understood why some people are so serious about their piercings, I hope this explains it. It's like bringing a part of your body that has disassociated from you...Home.
If mountain goats like living at high elevations, why do none live in high rise apartment buildings?
This post was edited by rosyxxx on Mar 21, 2006.