fashion Belly button rings are back and no thank you. Nicole Madigan

I was 17 years old when I convinced my parents to let me get my navel pierced, and they had just become a thing.

I had the triple pierced ears, the toe ring, the belly chain (I did love a trend). I wasn’t interested in a nose, eyebrow or nipple (ouch!) ring. But to me, the belly-button ring was the coolest new trend I’d seen in a long time, and I wanted in.

Lacking courage, I made my appointment with the only doctor in a region that was piercing navels. Unlike tattoo parlours or piercing venues, this doctor offered some local anesthetic, so he was the man for me.

I was in love. After a few days of oozing puss, antiseptic application, and turning the ring around daily, it finally looked as I wanted it to. Super cool and super sexy. At least, that’s what I thought at the time.

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I loved a barbell myself, with a big ol’ gemstone, and wasn’t too keen on the hoop styles. And given that low-rise jeans and crop-tops were the fashion choice of the time, there was plenty of opportunity to show it off.

When I did eventually take the ring out, it wasn’t because they were off-trend. While they’d probably lost a touch of their cool-factor, I was still very much into mine.

But, at 27 and pregnant with my first baby, my navel ring didn’t look quite so hot anymore. In fact, it looked as though it might rip clean through my very stretched skin.

As I waded through the baby and toddler years, trying to keep up with fashion as best I could, I rarely gave my belly button piercing a second though.