31 days until departure
Spoiler: the “hippogriff” is a metaphor for life (yes, this is one of those posts).
I was recently inspired on my travels around WordPress by a wonderful poem called Seasonal Weather by Andrea Ferrer. It talks about the inevitability of change, its arbitrary nature, its habit of bringing with it both good and bad.
This got me thinking about my own experiences, particularly those coming up within the next month. Something completely new is about to begin; something which will hopefully take me right out of my comfort zone and teach me new life skills, not to mention improve my Russian language skills. However, what if I quite like my comfort zone as it is, thank you very much? At the moment I verge between feeling incredibly excited and incredibly anxious. I love feeling independent and exploring new things, but I’ll be leaving behind all my loved ones. It will be an adventure, but also a journey into the unquantifiable. It’s impossible, until I go, to reconcile these contradictory emotions.
Recently, I watched Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban with my boyfriend. He’s reading the books for the first time and also wants to re-watch the movies. There’s one particular scene in the film which hit me hard: it was bittersweet and beautiful. Here it is:
The whole film/book takes Harry into very unfamiliar territory as he learns more about the past and his parents’ lives. It’s the first installment where you feel like he’s growing up, and get a real sense of the burden he’s carrying. In amongst this turbulence and change, there are little moments of joy like his ride on Buckbeak, the hippogriff. Furthermore, he initially doesn’t want to fly on Buckbeak – instead, Hagrid makes him (typical Hagrid) – but when Harry is compelled to do so, he feels such euphoria and freedom that he shouts out loud.
I hope that I can learn from Harry here. My imminent undertaking seems somewhat daunting, but even if it ends up becoming a journey of deep – and sometimes unhappy – self-knowledge and adaptation, I know that there will still be moments where I both ride the hippogriff, and prove to myself that it was worth doing.