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The end of Harry Potter — and our childhoods


The second to last installment of the Harry Potter series came out on Friday. Of course, I had already reserved a copy since I am beyond obsessed with both the books and the movie. And as I watched the movie at home for the sixth time, it really dawned on me how old I suddenly felt. I was in 5th grade, a timid little 11-year- old, when I was first brought the joy of a Harry Potter film. After reading the first book, I was hooked and they carried me through the rest of my childhood and teenage years.

      Now, at the age of 20, the last movie is set to come out in approximately 90 days. And just like that, the final love of my childhood will have truly ended. It’s hard to believe for almost a decade, Harry Potter has been part of my life. Not too long ago I was waiting in line at midnight to receive the next book or see the next movie. But in July, that’s all over. Of course, I’ll still love Harry Potter and collect various items—I already have a Deathly Hallows necklace!—and maybe one day pass on the stories to my kids, but the magic won’t be there. The magic of being a kid and dreaming of what life would be like had I not been a Muggle.

      Growing up is exciting, but scary. Instead of spending my summers sitting outside, reading and staying up late watching movies, I have to work. I mean, I can still do those things too, but without an internship, my future would be doomed. Our lives are spent planning months in advance what kind of internship we hope to get for the summer, where we’ll live, what classes we have to take to graduate on time. We’re passed the days of dreaming and playing with toy wands and moved on to the days of working, being a professional, and being on our own.

      It’s out of our control…unless someone can find an invisibility cloak and we can make our way through life getting away with just about anything. We have two choices: we can pout at all the little kids we see on the streets and pray for the good old days or we can push on, embracing our inner child but still allowing our wings to spread.

      As Lion King once told me, it’s the circle of life. We can’t escape it. We can’t cheat death or cast spells to make ourselves look younger (though I guess Botox is one evil form of witchery…). But we can embrace life. We can look fondly at the past and remember all the former loves of our lives—though Harry Potter will always be a foremost love in mine. No one said growing up was easy, but it doesn’t have to be hard either.

      Just take it a day at a time. Live each day like your last, filled with things you love but also with a more responsible inclination towards obligations. Growing up isn’t all about work and no play, and money money money. We can still love Harry Potter and break out the Disney movies from time to time. We’ll just have to make some more compromises on what we want to do and what work we have to do.

      Though the end of Harry Potter basically means the end of my life, somehow we’ll all find ourselves maybe 20 years from now, looking back at the end fondly and remembering the days when life was magical. Then again, life’s random moments can always be touched with magic, regardless of how old we are.

I'm a senior art history and magazine journalism major. I'm a junky for pop culture, watch way too much TV, and love to blog about it all.
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