I have been wearing weave since 8th grade.
I say this so you know how comfortable I am with weave NOT so you can imagine how chewed up my edges must be. Stay with me now.
My relationship with wigs is not that heavy.
I always feel like somebody’s momma. To be more specific. I feel like Lil Scrappy’s momma, Momma Dee.
But I get bored with styles easily and hate maintenance. So about thrice a year, I share my hair woes with the wrong person – my experimental momma, who always suggests the same thing, “Won’t you just get you one of these” pointing to the rows of styrofoam heads that line her dresser.
First I roll my eyes then I reluctantly say, “Pass me one” as I begin to swap out Evelyn for Ginger. “I used to have this one but in blonde” my Mom says, “I don’t know what happened to it though…”
I’m barely listening. Too busy trying to concentrate on becoming one with the wig. Imagining it as my own because I know me and once I get outside, I’m self conscious. Like a dog, you can smell my fear; fear that for no reason someone will easily identify my disguise, run up, snatch it off and roll around on the floor laughing with my hair-cap in hand. Then next thing you know, I’m standing in the middle of Peachtree, lookin like I just lost a fight on the Steve Wilkos show.
So I cocked my neck to the left and the right in the mirror seeing if this fits my chilli-bean shaped head. It’s something about that ‘new hair head cock’ that for black women answers the age old question, “Do I like this? Is this me? Do you love me? Are you gonna call me like you said you would?” Do it enough times and you begin to feel yourself in your new hair. And that my friends, is exactly what happened the night my wig fell off in the club.
I managed to leave my moms house safely with no Jerry Springer-esque assaults on the ride home. But in a lil bit I’d be faced with a more difficult task – swinging my neck back and forth to the beat like an HBCU majorette; with little effort but alotta precision. I needed to spend the time in between now and then practicing; deciding not what I was gonna wear but how I was going to staple this hair down to my head; comfortably or uncomfortably, didn’t matter to me. Alls I wanted to do was enjoy my night without a hair-care in the world.
And that I did. After a whole pack of hair pins, 2 wig caps (for reinforcement) and some tiny comb gadget that I made during my evening at YouTube University, I was ready to go. Feelin good. Lil lightheaded (from the reinforcement) but no biggie, at least I didn’t feel like Momma D in this biz-nye-ee! I’m in the club jammin, my song comes on and I’m all the way live. I feel more like an Auntie now. But like a cool auntie that buys you smokes, ya know?
Speaking of smoke. If you’re an insecure wig wearer, don’t do it. An Atlanta pastime I’ve never turned down, chiefin’ in the club, is what I believe set fire to my synthetic confidence that night. The ‘dogged fear’ I talked about in the beginning had come back to haunt me. I just felt like something bad was going to happen. Three rotations and a popped bottle later and I’m only halfway dancing at this point. Instead splitting my time between a sexy, lazy, two-step and lookin in the cut for the predatory wig-puller I’d dreamt up earlier. I KNEW that imaginary man was in here somewhere and I was going to find him before he found me.
I was so deep off in mental investigation that I didn’t even notice my got damn wig had already fallen off my stockin-cap-head ass, head!
And who knocked my top off you ask? None other than the nigga I came here with! Somewhere between Two-Chains, “It’s Your berf-day, it’s your berf-day” and Fetty Wap’s “All fast money, no sloooow bucks“, Wild Armed Willie over here lost his mind and personal space and I? I lost my hair!
It mustn’t have been off for long because, from what I can tell no one noticed but the two of us. It was quick thinking from thereon out. So quick that I know if me and my dude are ever in a fire together, we got this. Surrounded by strobing lights and hookah smoke, in an already crammed VIP section we spotted my wig, which to my recollection now looked like the mechanical muskrat Martin & Gina fought on the vacation episode. No time for regret though because my hair is in of all places the neighboring VIP section!
I wish I could have stopped at that point to remember the song that was playing at that very moment because, swear pho God it saved my life! The very important people next to us were so absorbed in the hit that they saw nothing of me and my spastic-armed partner, semi-climbing over to the the next section and grabbin “mommas” wig. Then, almost as if we’d practiced it, he stood discreetly in front of me, shielding me on all sides so I could complete the mission in secrecy. It all happened in 7, maybe 12 seconds. After that, I sat my ass down. Content on conducting my sedentary dance routine from the couch for the rest of the night.
And that’s it. My edges still ain’t shit. I still wear wigs here and there with little confidence. And if my boyfriend notices before we head out he asks, “You sho?”. There is no moral to this story. Just wanted to yall bout the time my wig fell off in the club.
May God bless you and may God keep your wigs on from now on
Ahhhhhh-men. (Doors to the church open).
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