While I was younger, I had a difficult time reading. I felt I was so slow and I found I wouldn’t read because I was embarrassed about how long it would take me to read something. I would always ask to pass in class or at church if I was asked to read something aloud. I got my first love of books when my mom started to read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone to me aloud. She knew I struggled with reading and she always was good at finding ways to get me to spend time with her. Books 1-3, we together often snuggled together under a warm blanket. I was loving reading stories about this magical world and was the same age as the characters, so I felt so attached to them. When I got to 6th grade I remember my parents suggested that I take a reading class. It was a class full of students like me who couldn’t read well and it taught us tricks on how to read, and then all we did in class was read books. I got introduced to so many amazing books that year. I grew more confident in my abilities to read independently. I was still shaky about reading aloud but was often willing to do it.
By the time the 4th and 5th book came out, I was able to confidently but slowly read them on my own. My mom agreed that if I read the Order of the Phoenix, that she would buy me the books on cassette tape after I read them.
Going into high school, my love for the books got put on the back burner a bit. I felt it was “uncool” to love to read and it was definitely uncool to love something so childish as Harry Potter. I read the books as soon as they came out and also watched the movies. I loved listening to Jim Dale read Harry Potter books, and often found comfort in listening to his voice, but it wasn’t a priority in my life. (Insert famous Ron quote: “She needs to sort out her priorities”).
High school was rough for me and I felt like I didn’t know who I was. I felt like I needed to be what others thought I should be instead of finding out who I truly was. Struggled. My senior year I felt like I got acquainted with God and also felt more comfortable in my own skin.
When I left for college, I felt so lonely. I brought my books on tape so I wouldn’t feel so alone. It was very comforting to hear Jim Dale’s voice reading the magical stories to me as I tried to stay caught up with my class load. I can’t even count how many times I have listened to all of the books.
I met my husband soon after I arrived and we hit it off right away. After many awkward social situations we started dating. I am so glad that he made me feel comfortable and loved me with all of my quirks. As I grew to love him more and more, I felt I grew to love myself even more. I felt more comfortable being myself.
We recently celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary, and I still fall more in love with him every day!
Now my husband has a passion and love for Christmas that is equal to or surpasses my love for Harry Potter. It is so nice that I have someone that understands having a strong obsession. We will often get things for each other to feed the obsessions. When I told my husband I wanted to meet up at Universal Orlando to meet up with my latest podcast (click for link to podcast) obsession Swish and Flick, where they talk about all things Harry Potter, he said “When and Where” and even bought me a T-Shirt.
I feel that ‘openly’ loving Harry Potter again has helped me to accept that I am a kid at heart and that is OK, and I love myself for who I am. I appreciate good books, and often will stay up for hours late at night discussing Potter theories with my husband.
We have 4 young kids in our home now and my oldest is 8. All of my kids know that I am obsessed with Hogwarts and love to read, talk about, and obsess over Harry Potter. I can’t wait for my son to get old enough to read the first book and hopefully get hooked into the magical world with me.
My husband and I were recently in charge of picking the theme and activities for a family reunion hosted by his parents. Naturally we picked Harry Potter and Christmas. We had a Triwizard tournament, a yule ball, delicious feasts, white elephant gift exchange, lots of laughs, and good memories. This is a picture of everyone that was at the family reunion in their house colors!
I am a proud Hufflepuff with a secondary of equal amounts of Gryffindor and Ravenclaw. My Patronus is never the same but my favorite one that I have gotten is a Fox. My wand is Hazel wood with phoenix feather core, 12 ½ inches and reasonably supple flexibility. My Ilvermorny house is Thunderbird and I am a proud Potterhead. My favorite book is probably Goblet of Fire. My favorite audio book is Order of the Phoenix, my favorite movie is Prisoner of Azkaban. My favorite character is Luna Lovegood. The magical world of Harry Potter is always there to welcome you home, and Hogwarts is open to all witches and wizards.