Ritual Cleansing

Today’s Daily Prompt:

Think about your day. Select one of your daily rituals and explain it to us: why do you do what you do? How did you come to adopt this ritual? What happens on days when you can’t perform it?

Since July, I’ve gotten three new piercings, so one of my daily rituals is cleaning them.

I generally subscribe to the LITHA method of piercing aftercare–leave it the hell alone. It’s served me well, and even my most recent, a second nostril piercing, is less than a month old and almost fully healed. That one doesn’t get much special cleaning, but my two forward helices certainly do.

I knew I was in for a long healing and aftercare period before I got them, but I was prepared. Mostly. I’ve had them three months and two months, and I still have to clean crusties off daily. I’ve never had a piercing that I couldn’t see both sides of, so this is a new experience. So is hypertrophic scarring, but one has already disappeared, so we’re going well.

Every night before bed, I turn the bathroom faucet on full hot, and cup the water in my hand to wash over my ear. I lean over the sink like this until the water gets too hot to take, unless my ear is feeling sore, in which case I turn some cold on to slightly mitigate the heat and keep going. This works soothing wonders. And unlike a cup, the water doesn’t get cold. Unless you have some serious stamina and don’t mind not being able to stand up straight after leaning under a faucet for however long it takes to empty the water heater.

When I’ve had enough, I blot around my ear with a towel, then use cotton swabs to dry all the crevices in my ear. Finally, I take a damp cotton swab to clean around each piercing. There is usually quite a bit of yuck on the backside, which I tend to marvel at before tossing my cotton swab. So much crud.

Then I wash my face and moisturize and we’re done!

Oh, days I can’t perform it? There aren’t any. I make sure of that. Even if I happened to not have running water, I would still have an ear-dedicated bottle of water and some cotton swabs. I don’t want to screw up my ear.

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2 Comments on “Ritual Cleansing”

  1. abbiosbiston says:

    They really are grim in the healing stage aren’t they? My nose was disgusting but not a patch on my belly and even though I haven’t worn earrings in almost 30 years stuff still comes out of the holes sometimes. By comparison tattoos are a dream.


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