I finally got around to going to the piercing/tattoo shop, having planned to for weeks. It's the only place on the east side, and the piercing guy only works a few hours part of the week (and rarely at a convenient time).
Wow, it's been five years and change since I got the industrial (and about three and a half since I took it out). While I wasn't really talking about it at great length, my life was in total chaos back then. These days, I wouldn't say things are chaotic, but they're not exactly orderly either. Funny how that goes. In any case, the keloid mess that used to be my ear has been pretty stable now for almost three years, and I kind of liked having something in my ear (I'll stop short of singing "I Feel Pretty" here). And shit, even grandmas have visible piercings in Seattle.
I briefly considered doing the industrial again. The piercing guy talked me out of it, suggesting that the keloids could have been caused by either my disposition or some kind of irritation. So a small ring in a single hole seemed like a better idea, and it's even a gauge smaller (16g, I think). God knows it'll be easier to sleep on.
All things considered, this one didn't hurt at all. I'm not sure if it's because I knew what to expect, because there was less tissue to cut through or some other reason. It still had that satisfying pop and rush of adrenaline, but it wasn't painful. I think I might be a closet masochist if I was really hoping for more pain.
Regardless, I've got my reminder again to take care of myself. Hopefully I'll be satisfied with it for awhile and not want more.