This is another old Tumblr post, but I’m making a concentrated effort to save a bunch of my old Tumblr posts that I’m proud of to a central place. This one is from when I went to the NXT show in Atlanta.
Let me tell you a story about Bayley from tonight.
Bayley had a match with Daria Berenato, which she won. Afterwards, she went around the ring, giving hugs and giving her merch away. She gave her tassels to two sisters in the section across the ring from me and they proceeded to wear them on opposite wrists. It was adorable.
Anyway, she sees a girl in the row behind me in the handicapped section with a “Master of Hugonomics” sign and proceeds to jump the barrier to give her her t-shirt and a hug.
Then Bayley looks right at me, seeing me in my full Finn Bálor gear, but wearing the pair of tassels I bought during intermission on and tosses me her headband. Which in my shocked state, forget to catch, but a guy in a Shinsuke Nakamura shirt in the row in front of me hands it back to me and I clutch it close like a holy grail.
The girl next to me, who is all decked out in Bayley merch, got one of her slap bracelets from her and we proceed to squeal at each other like pre-teens in our complete excitement. Later, I flash the headband to Izzy, who gasps in excitement still, despite her leagues worth of experience with Bayley.
And the thing is, I know it’s just a thing. I own a headband like this already. But it’s like what my friend Jen wrote about once with the meanings we imbue in things. The hubcap Finn performed a Coup De Grace on in Chicago was no longer a piece of junk, but the shattered remnants of a moment in time. For me, it’s that Bayley, one of my biggest inspirations in the past year, threw me a headband I already own and it was like a precious token from on high.
Bayley and Finn mean the world to me. They helped me in ways they’ll never know in a year where I learned a lot about myself. Through them (and lots of other wrestlers, but they’re the big two), the lessons I learned through Kelly Sue Deconnick and Captain Marvel about self-love and respect were strengthened. I told Kieron Gillen once about how ‘Style’ by Taylor Swift was my curse song, but it was at an NXT show months later when I heard it and realized that curse had been broken.
Bayley gave me a headband tonight, but she’s also given me so much more than that.