There was an act of bravery in Tennessee last week when Pam Mckelvy of WC TV revealed on television her natural hair while on air for the first time. Pam revealed the cutest TWA that she had kept hidden under a smooth haired wig* in an effort to remain conservative.
Pam had been working on the news set for 15 years and this was a huge step for her, as it always is when stepping into the public eye with natural hair for the first time. Pam introduced a segment about women and their “Crowns of glory” and she discussed how chemotherapy treatments had led to her losing all of her hair.
In her reveal moment Pam, clearly very emotional thanked her co-workers for just being there for her as she went through all the things that breast cancer brings with it. When you see a moment like that you can’t help but wonder how free she must have felt as she showed off her new grown in curls and the weight that was lifted from her shoulders as she wore her own hair for the first time on the air.
It is still a huge step for women, especially those in media, to wear their hair natural, because black hair is still not considered conservative enough and in extreme cases even offensive.
Pam’s reveal is a huge step for the community because we still struggle with getting across the idea to closed minded individuals that this is the way our hair naturally grows. Pam said this on air:
I’m going natural. No more relaxers to straighten my hair.
The Memphis Anchor shared her cancer story with her viewers back in 2012 including the details of a double mastectomy and her struggles with chemotherapy. Last week she shared a message of self love and acceptance with the stories of our young girls who have been publicly ridiculed at school because of their hair. She said:
I made my choice also because I think about the message I send to young women about confidence and self-acceptance,” giving a special shout-out to 12-year-old Vanessa VanDyke, the biracial Florida student who was threatened with expulsion if she didn’t tame her “distracting” natural hair. “The times are changing, and God’s delivered me with a brand-new spirit and a head full of hair, and here it is.
Even though I mentioned that this was a huge step for the community, you can’t separate the fact that the community has had a great effect on these individuals as well. It is almost full circle because as women everywhere take a stand it becomes easier for other women everywhere to take a stand, even the ones in the public eye. Pam said:
It’s not about what’s on the outside, it’s about what’s on the inside. And I feel, on the inside, I am more radiant and beautiful than I’ve ever been.
We would like to add that natural hair kinda makes you radiant on the outside too… win win. Congratulations Pam, we hope you enjoy your new natural journey!