A recent thing I realized about myself: I kind of like pain.
I have always said I fear pain and avoid it at all costs. There is some truth to that. But, as with most aspects of my life, there is an inverse truth.
I do NOT like getting hurt. I don’t like unexpected pain. Dropping something on my foot, biting my cheek… Not cool! The idea of surgery terrifies me. I don’t want to get in a physical fight with anyone. I HATE that I have some sort of inexplicable illness/disorder that makes my stomach hurt. I don’t like being ill. These are all types of pain I try to avoid.
I like self-inflicted pain. I mean this in both the creepy way you just thought I meant AND in a less scary way. In general, I like the pain I can control.
As for the creepy… Confession – I have hurt myself on purpose because I find the sensation sort of comforting. The sharp jab of digging into my skin. Maybe one day I’ll do a long, involved post about my conquered OCD problem, but for now I’ll just say that I will only very recently admit the fact that there was a small amount of pleasure I derived from making myself bleed. Not meaning the emotional punishment I later realized I was exacting on myself. An actual physical enjoyment from the pain of it.
The somewhat-less creepy but still maybe a bit deviant methods of self-controlled pain include the tattoos and the piercings. I am by no means heavy on either of these. And I can’t speak for other people, but most of whom I’ve spoken to say they don’t enjoy the pain part of these but do it for the results and that it’s worth it afterwards. There have got to be a lot of people who do like it though. I think I’m subdued in the amount of pain I enjoy. Too much isn’t fun. Just a little bit.
What brought about this realization was a conversation I had with my friend and our shared piercer guy when she was getting holes punched in her face. We were talking about the difference between tattoos and piercings. It seems that most (of our friends, at least) prefer ink over metal but I said lately, I’m leaning more towards the piercings. I would fill myself up if I didn’t feel held back by Hubby’s preferences and lack of money. I said the reason was that tattoos have a limit. You only have so much skin you can cover until you run out of space but a piercing you can take out, let heal, do it again, move it around, etc. Plus they are smaller so you can do more. There is also the added bonus that getting pierced is less expensive than getting tattooed and coming up with a design and deciding on placement, etc. is much more involved for tattoos. I have vague plans for a bunch of tattoos I’d like in the future but I know EXACTLY which piercings I want and where.
So, literally as the words were coming out of my mouth, I put two and two together. I like the idea that you can get the piercing and experience that pain, then potentially take it out and do it again. Over and over again.
The piercer told us about the “most tattooed guy in the world”, who was pictured on the wall behind my friend’s head, and how he would black out his skin completely to essentially be one big tattoo, then go over it in white, then black again, and so forth, therefore doing with ink what I had just thought about with holes.
There is also a difference after both tattoos and piercings are healed. Once your tattoo stops scabbing, itching, flaking, it’s pretty much set in your skin and you can forget you have it other than when you look at it. Piercings, on the otherhand, can provide that tiny little bit of pain as long as the metal is attached to you. Ever snag a piece of jewelry and feel that sharp pull? If it’s accidental, booooooo. If you’re feeling anxious, however, pulling on the ring in your lip can be comforting.
Sidenote: I know the piercer guy gets this. I follow him on Facebook. He’s into some intense shit. My appreciation for pain is NOWHERE NEAR that level.
Another revelation the more I thought about this was it’s not just physical pain I ‘torture’ myself with. Think about my tastes in books, movies, music, etc…. I like to be emotionally tortured too. The best stories are the ones that squeeze my heart and shred it apart.
Again, all within my control though. I never want someone else to hurt me without my permission.
Hmmm… I’d make a good sub, no? Hahaha.