One Day I'll Go to Hogwarts

I grew up on a healthy diet of fantasy. As is fairly normal in childhood. From Disney movies to books with children going on adventures, to the stories that played in my mind. In my family, reading, and artistic endeavors, and imagination were encouraged. I took drawing lessons where I learned how to see objects for what they were and make them come alive in a different world, one of graphite and charcoal.

 I spent many mornings and afternoons at the library, running my hand across the spines of books along the shelves, wondering how I could choose what to read first.

Somewhere along the line, many young people are told they are not creative, or given the impression that only artists draw and only writers write. Labels become important. Somewhere along the line, for many people, play gets left behind.

Imagination and creativity come more naturally to some, but we do a disservice to ourselves when only people put in the “creative” box harness their imagination. I believe, wholeheartedly, that every human being has it in them to be creative. Imagination is not only for those who have the label of artist or writer; it is for everyone. My degree is not in the arts, but that does not mean I will ever leave my creative, child-like self behind. I believe if we all open our minds to our imaginations; it will help us in whatever field we are in. I read about scientific and technological advances and am in awe of the creativity such pursuits take.

I believe the importance of play and imagination never go away. We know that it is vital for children’s development to play and explore. When was the last time you played in the rain? (For me, it was last summer.) When was the last time you allowed yourself to be so absorbed in a fantasy world that you believed, even for a moment, that you could go there? As a kid, after watching a movie, I would always play it out afterwards. After reading books about kids solving mysteries and going on adventures, I played out my own adventures. The world amazed me; it still does.

As we grow up, it is easy to get absorbed in work and school. The stresses that come with money and day to day necessities of life fill our minds. As I go through life, I try to never forget that kid I once was. The girl who splashed in puddles and built with LEGOS. Who daydreamed about the adventures she would have, and saw life as something to be celebrated. I take her with me. Through planning my next steps in my education and the day to day activities of life. And when I worry that a story I am writing is not good enough, I remind myself why I write. It brings me joy. That is enough reason to keep writing.

Allow yourself to play. Draw, color, build, or invent something. Write poems or stories. Learn a musical instrument. Play in the rain. It does not have to be a serious undertaking; do it for yourself. Yes, the world can be a crazy place and not every plan you make will work out. Life has a way of changing on its own. It is in those times that it is most important to allow ourselves to remember how fun it can be to be human. No, optimisms will not cure trials. But to be human is to experience it all. So, let us never forget to experience the fun of allowing our imaginations to soar and of being silly. I for one will never give up my hope of one day finding my way to Hogwarts.