I dunno whether you guys know this about me…but I’m a pretty huge HP fan. Like, a substantial amount of my wardrobe (as an adult) is HP related in some way or another. And my bedroom is basically a glorified mini version of the Ravenclaw Tower.
I also have anxiety. Crippling, all consuming, anxiety at times. I’ve had it since I was a kid. It comes in ebbs and flows–sometimes it’s manageable, sometimes I spend all day crying in my room, unable to do anything productive.
Now these two things seem like polar opposites. But to me, they are irretrievably intertwined. Harry Potter has become a sort of comfort blanket to my anxiety–whenever life gets too much, I settle down with a book or a movie, and it just chills me out.
Now, the last year of my life has been pretty darn challenging. I’ve written and re-written a book, completed a MA full time, and worked a part-time job every weekend. It’s been full on, but I’ve coped with it.
What I’m a little more iffy on is change. Like the entire concept of it. A few weeks ago I submitted my dissertation, last weekend I left my job, and next week I start my PhD. That’s a lot of change in one go.
But then I saw my fav Grace’s excellent blog post on the matter, and decided I needed to re-read HP immediately.
I normally read HP every year, at Christmas, but this year I decided September was the time to visit Hogwarts again. I needed too. As soon as I picked up the first book, I felt better, calmer, more ready to take on the world. It was the tonic to my stress. Sinking back in to that familiar world, a story I love so much, was just so comforting.
Obviously I’m not saying Harry Potter is the cure-all to my mental illness, of course not–medication and therapy is the bread & butter of treatment. But in this month of stress and worries and, yes, change, it has been my constant companion–my calm in a sea of chaos.
So, this blog has been a tad rambling & pointless, sorry about that. What I’m trying to say is, favourite books can ease worries & struggles, and help you escape from the stress of real life. It’s not a novel thought (haha–pun intended), but I think it’s one that needs to be reiterated. There’s a lot of emphasis on ARC’s and reading new releases in the book community (which are great, I LOVE me some new releases), but there is so much value in visiting old favourites, especially when times are tough.
What do you read when you’re feeling down?