Saturday, September 17, 2016

Back story

Forgive my absence. 

Besides work, which has been crazy full moon busy 
although not as stressful as full moon busy in the ER,
I've been traveling.
I've been exploring another world;
a world filled with spells, 
fanciful creatures,
children's magical thinking
and the universal themes of 
good vs evil,
life and death
life after death.

As soon as GI Joe and the DIL announced
they were going to be decorating the nursery
in a Harry Potter theme,
 I knew I needed to get busy.
Yup, I'm THAT person;
the one who never read any Harry Potter books when they first came out.
So binge reading was definitely called for
and, I'm proud to say,
I rose to the challenge.
 Series complete.
I'm all caught up.

I understand the lingo and the references
but more than that,
I understand the appeal.

As I was reading, I found myself regretting
not having read them alongside my son when he was young;
it was a missed opportunity for conversations about what he'd experienced.

A boy whose life was altered by the death of a parent;
one who always felt 'different',
whose gifts and abilities were not fully understood by those around him;
(although I refuse to call myself a Muggle!),
a boy who was frequently surrounded by people
fearful of naming the very thing which had 'marked' him forever.

I look at the nursery for Tater
and see not only a fathers love of a good fable
but a fathers back story as well.

The powerful lessons in Harry Potter

*the people you love never leave you
* You are not alone
* Your 'tribe' and 'home' are waiting to be found
* all trauma, especially life altering ones, leave a mark - 
the pain of which comes and goes and sometimes
the pain of it feels like it will kill you
* there are 'realities' beyond those we 'know'
and the most important
* Love is more powerful than hate and lasts beyond death.

are lessons we all need to be reminded of periodically.

I love that Harry's journey to maturity took him from the typical viewpoint of a child  -
of seeing situations and people as being either  'good' or 'bad' -
to a more nuanced recognition
(albeit more confusing)
of the complexity of the human condition
and acceptance of the duality that people can be both/and
at the same time.
 Should Tater ever need a quick get away,
his broom will be right by the window!
 There's magic going on in this room -
and healing
and excitement
and love.
 Just a few more weeks.
He'll be here before you know it!

ps  #1- yes, my DIL is very loving and accommodating
to give GI Joe free reign in decorating the nursery.
I suspect she's just biding her time,
waiting for the day when a Disney princess theme will prevail!

ps#2 - yes, I did mention that I'm in the camp of readers outliers
who believe Harry Potter dies at the end of the series.
I believe both Harry and He Who Must Not Be Named both die.

I think in the chapter of Kings Cross  -
where Harry is 'born again',
naked, with his 'vision' restored and his scar gone -
he's in a new reality beyond the life he knew.

I think it's perfectly fitting with the Christian understanding
 that life is changed not ended.

I think the epilogue is Harry's 'heaven' -
(having a loving partner and family, raising children and being the father he never had).

I also understand those readers who believe he dies but chooses to return to the life he had,
knowing more loss and pain awaited him.

All valid viewpoints;
all choices revealing more about ourselves than about Harry or JK Rowlings;
all revealing our own backstories.

 My favorite line of the whole series?
"Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, 
but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?"

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