My Wig Fell Off at the gym | #WorldMentalHealthDay


I was mid frog jump when I felt a sudden rush of breeze on my scalp as my wig flew into the air. I watched $200 worth of Brazilian locs fall 10 meters from my feet on the floor of the gym, while I simultaneously released a cry of muffled horror. A split second passed before white heat flooded my brain, rendering me completely blank.

WTF just happened?

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Now, let me give you some context. As the only black girl at my gym, I’m used to remarks like “Wow you cut your hair?” only to get reactions like “Omg! It grew so fast” every time I switch up my hairstyle. Like most black girls, I often wear hair extensions in the form of weaves and braids as it allows me switch up my look without having to damage my natural hair. On this fine day, I was wearing a wig because I was running late and it was the fastest way to make my hair look presentable. In my haste I must have forgotten to properly secure it or did it loosen when I tugged too hard at my bra top while changing? Who knows? Who cares? Wtf just happened?

As the white of my brain filtered back into color, my mind raced with a million questions “Why hadn’t someone invented teleportation yet?”, “Could the floor swallow me up if I wished really hard?”, “Surely, I must be dreaming?” shaking my wigless head back into reality, I knew that even in my wildest dreams I couldn’t conjure something as horrid this. 

Leaning forward, I picked up my wig and crawled to a table the corner of the gym to put it back on. “Yeah, this is the last time I am ever a stepping foot in here” I thought as I huddled under the table, determined to remain there till they turned off the lights and I could sneak out. I wondered if the gym would give me a refund as I painfully swallowed the urge to cry, while blindly tugging my wig in place.

From under the table, I saw legs walk toward me and then a hand reached out to help me up. It was Sophie, one of the workers a the gym. She looked at me with sympathy but I saw the corners of her eyes crinkle with laughter and it was in that moment that I cracked. I started laughing and so did she. Who was I kidding? This was hilarious, horrible but hilarious.  I laughed, laughed and laughed and five minutes later I was all good. The worst possible thing had happened in the gym and well, nothing happened. I adjusted my wig one more time and walked right back into the class to finish my workout *avoiding eye contact with everyone* no one ever brought it up and I never talked about it.

You see, embarrassing moments happen and in these moments it is up to use to either hole up and fixate over it or pick up ourselves and laugh it off. It’s been 4 months and I still twinge with embarrassment when I think of it but I always follow it with a belly laugh.

I’m telling this story in support of #WorldMentalHealth day. This situation could have easily gone either way, but I’m happy I ended up living through one of my worst fears and laughing at myself. It is a constant reminder even now as I struggle with anxiety that our fear only has the power we give it. You are stronger and more capable than you think and you can handle whatever life throws your way.

What are your most embarrassing gym moments? Make me feel better about myself lol!