I read the “Harry Potter” series of books when the were first published. I think she had released three or four of them, when my father noticed that there were multiple books on the New York Times Bestseller List. At once. And that, he said, is something that bears looking at. So we did. And we loved them. Both of us.
I haven’t re-read them for awhile, but I’m watching a movie marathon this weekend. While the character of Luna is not nearly as fleshed out in the movies, she is still my favorite. “Looney” Lovegood, as she is sometimes known, is definitely her own person. She dances to her own drummer, has her own fashion sense and, even in the magical community, has some pretty bizarre beliefs. She takes the resulting teasing in stride and truly believes that it is all in good fun.
But, Luna is extremely loyal. She is extremely brave. She speaks the truth, even when it is difficult. She does not give up her beliefs simply because others don’t join her in believing. And she’s ok with others not sharing her beliefs. She takes it all with a smile.
I think about Luna a lot when I consider my mental illness. But, Luna isn’t crazy. She’s eccentric. I went to Universal Studios in Florida once the Harry Potter exhibit was opened. And, I bought a wand. I bought Luna’s wand. I wanted to remember that just because someone is different, doesn’t mean that they’re wrong. I wanted to remember to dance to my own drummer. I wanted to remember to be brave in the face of overwhelming odds.
And I wanted to remember to smile while doing it.
(Now, if you want crazy…may I introduce you to Bellatrix Lestrange…played brilliantly by Helena Bonham Carter)