Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Harry Potter: Keep Calm and Hold Hands

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was released in September of 1998. That's almost a full thirteen years ago. I started reading the books when Prisoner of Azkaban was released a year later. That means that Harry Potter has been a part of my life for the past 12 years. That's over half of my lifetime. I haven't even had relationships with friends that span the length of time I've spent with Harry, Ron, Hermione, Neville, Fred, George, Ginny, Mr. & Mrs. Weasley, Luna, Hagrid, Dumbledore, Sirius, McGonagall, Snape, Draco, Dobby, Remus, Tonks, Voldemort, and so many other characters.

Before I go on - and trust me I will - I wanted to share this video that Sarah from Sarah's Random Musings shared on her blog at the end of May:

That's seven films rolled into 4 short minutes. And it's incredible.

In one month, all of that will be over. The end of the books was a sad day for me and I tried so hard to savor every last word on every single page. Closing the cover of The Deathly Hallows felt like the beginning of goodbye. A month from now, that goodbye will be real. The characters I've grown to love, to hold dear to my heart, and seen come to life on the screen, will be signing off. Their stories will have ended and all I can think is, that's my childhood. Right there. 12 years culminating in one night and 2 and half hours. Seven books, eight movies, 4,100 pages, translated into 17 hours and 32 minutes. All over.

Just thinking about it makes me want to cry. If you didn't grow up with Harry Potter, if you didn't read it throughout the past years, then the feeling isn't the same. Sure, maybe you still feel sad by the passing, but for those who are my age, for those who opened their doors and the hearts, their eyes and their minds to an 11 year old boy and his magical world, when they themselves were just children, July 15th is both a blessing and a curse.

We will see the end of something monumental, something life-changing and beloved. This is our childhood coming to a close.

Below is a video of cast members summing up their Harry Potter experience in one word. It couldn't be more perfect - Emma, Dan, Rupert, everyone really, say exactly how the series made me feel. And it gets me because it's how I feel too.

Now if I had to describe my Harry Potter experience in one word, I think I'd say...everything.

Because that's what Harry Potter is/was/and will always be to me. A world was touched by Harry Potter and I cannot thank J.K. Rowling enough for the memories, friendships, and hours I spent lost in Harry's world. The series helps defines who I am as a person because it was such a part of my growing up. That being said, watching this video makes me cry, so if you feel the same as me about Harry Potter, be prepared for a few tears.

So, like the image at the top says:
Keep calm & holds hands.

The magic will never end.


thecheapreader said...

I loved you comment about the characters being in your life longer than some friends. I've never thought of it that way before but it's absolutely true. Those books and those characters have been a huge part of my life for almost 13 years. It's going to be so weird to say good bye.

Taschima Cullen said...

I just woke up, why must you make me cry? Oh gosh...I started reading when Chamber of Secrets came out, I was so young... If I had to describe my experience with the in one word it would be unforgettable.

Zombie Girrrl said...

I, too, have spent the greater part of my life with these characters, and, like you, they've been in my life longer than any friendships I've ever had. The only people I've known longer are my family. If you've never read the series, you can't understand. Even younger readers really can't appreciate that. It's something entirely unique to our generation.
I remember the feeling of waiting for the next book, of finally having it in my hands. It's a nastalgic, excited feeling, one I've not had since the series was complete. Thinking about it is like hearing a long-forgotten song from your childhood; it makes you pause and smile slowly at the memories.
I still remember reading the first book; where I was, what I thought, how I swore I could hear the applause in the Great Hall.
Yes, it was just a story. Yes, I know it wasn't real. Yes, there are many far more important things. But this was a huge part of my childhood. Hogwarts was my Disney Land.
It's going to be a sad day when the final curtain falls and Harry, Ron and Hermione become, once and for all, Daniel, Rupert and Emma.

Zombie Girrrl said...

Oh, and my one word: fantastic.

Scoot said...

Oh, this post makes me so happy. I am excited and torn about this last movie coming out. What are we going to do now that there is not something Harry Pottery-ish to look forward to each year? *sigh*

Love the post and the videos! Thanks for sharing.

Amy (ArtsyBookishGal) said...

It will never end. Never, you hear me? I still refuse to accept Fred's "death."

Briana said...


WHY must you do this to me? I'm sad enough about the ending already ='(

Emily a.k.a WilowRaven : ) said...


When I'm having a good day sometimes the only thing I want to do is watch Harry Potter.

Great post!! I can't wait for the last movie...I just might cry watching it though.

Kaitlyn (Kaitlyn in Bookland) said...

That first video rocks something fierce---I hadn't seen it before, thanks! I love the second one too... it makes me cry. It's really the perfect cast. The release of the last movie will be so bittersweet. :(

Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books) said...

thecheapreader - I keep seeing the trailers and as excited as I am for the final movie, it's THE FINAL MOVIE and it's going to hurt so much when it ends.

Taschima - Sorry to make you cry :( *hands you a tissue* Writing up the post made me want to cry. Unforgettable is another perfect word to describe the series. HP will be a part of my life for forever and I'll hold onto that long after it's ended.

Zombie Girrrl - You. Said. It. Perfectly. All of it. Everything. HP means so much to our generation that when it's over, really and truly over, there's going to be this void in my life where HP used to be. I'm not saying the series won't still be a part of me, because it always will, but the characters will stop growing up with me. Their time has ended. It's like the end of an era for us and it's both terrifying and despairing.

And, fantastic, indeed!

Scoot - Thank you for stopping by and checking out the post! I have no clue what we'll all do with this HP-sized void in our lives. Reread? Rewatch the movies? Go the amusement park? <<you have to do that last one too because it is - completely necessary word usage - magical.

Amy - I was going to delete your comment because of spoilers - but if someone's reading this post and doesn't know that happens then they're living under a rock - but I still cannot accept what I know happened. Fred! Why Fred?! I love Fred!

Briana - I HAD to do it. Share my grief, okay?

Emily - On any given day, all I want to do is watch or read Harry Potter. It's like comfort food to me. Except it makes me cry and gets me all worked up. So not all that comforting, I guess. And I'm thinking about bringing tissues to the theater with me; probably not for the movie, but for the after the movie waterworks that could start up.

Kaitlyn - That first video is so freaking amazing! And the second one gets me every single time. Rupert just standing there, thinking, while they cut to everyone else, is love.

Bere said...

Awww, what a touching post, Nikki. I have to admit that I never read the books so I cannot say that I understand what you're feeling but I have loved and devoured the movies. I loved the video you've posted. It just made me want to bust out with a HP movie marathon hehe. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts with us, Nikki. =)

Lori said...

You made me cry, Nikki! I unfortunately didn't grow up with the books, and that is something that I sincerely regret. I didn't read them until...two years ago? It was the month before the Half blood Prince movie came out. Anyway, I've only had them in my life for two years and I'm a little devastated that it's about to be over. I can only imagine what you are feeling. It's very bittersweet.

booksntea said...

I love this post even if it does make me feel a little sad. Harry Potter and his friends have been apart of my life since 1999 when Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was released. 12 years! Harry Potter was one of the most consistant things in my life considering I've moved around just about every four years. Sometimes even less. The books keps me company when I was alone. But, even more important, they helped me make friends who were in love with Harry Potter just as much as I was!

I was sad when I finished up the final book. But, I was at least relieved that I still had a few movies to wait for. I don't know how I will feel come July 15, but I'll be sad to see my childhood come to a close too. But, it's not like I'll really have to say goodbye to the series. Harry Potter books are the only ones that I've reread. Multiple times. And I'm pretty sure I'll never really stop rereading them.

- Jackie

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