I have neglected my blog again. It has been a running theme this year. Still. Here we are. 2017. It’s funny, 2016 was such a disaster of a year for the world, but for me, I won’t remember for Trump or Brexit or any number of disasters. 2016 was the year that I found okay. I left uni. I got a job. I abandoned a dream that wasn’t ever really mine. I got through November.
So here I am. As the last minutes of the year tick away, still inside my Snow Globe, sitting in the foundations of my library. It has taken so long to find okay. To find a place with enough stability that I don’t spend every spare moment waiting for the ground to crumble underneath me and the earth to swallow me whole. I am grateful for okay. It’s only in finding it that I’ve rediscovered that hollow sense inside, that hole where once a person used to be. I’m settled in the courtyard, for now it’s only flagstones and muddy patches waiting to be filled with fountains or trees. The courtyard is in the centre of the three buildings, Compassion, Knowledge and Creativity. It’s the perfect place to discuss Luna Lovegood.
Since I started writing two and a bit years ago, I have been meaning to write about Harry Potter and here we are. When I first met Luna, as a nine-year-old, reading Order of the Phoenix in the early hours of the morning, I loved her instantly. For the first time, there was a Harry Potter character I could see myself in. I was Luna, far, far more than I’d ever been Harry, Ron or Hermione. Luna had a deep understanding of herself; she was perfectly at home in her own skin. She accepted herself exactly as she was, it didn’t matter that other people didn’t, she could see that as their loss and not hers. Luna never compromised herself, her thoughts, her beliefs because other people bullied her. She didn’t paint on a face or act a part, she was always exactly herself. Luna embraced being different. At first, Luna appeared odd and amusing, but even in that first meeting, I could see how perceptive she was. Luna understands people on a level so deep it’s uncomfortable. She doesn’t understand social rules, but she’s empathic, she can read the person behind the front. She related to people the way I did and I loved that about her. I admired her capacity for kindness. Luna is easily one of the most compassionate characters in the series. She cares about people so much more than they care about her. She is grateful, not resentful, for any act of kindness towards her, not because she doesn’t think that she deserves it, but because she doesn’t expect it.
As I grew older, I came to respect Luna more. Luna was fourteen in Order of the Phoenix and she still had that self-belief. That freedom to be true to herself. I lost my Luna. I couldn’t pinpoint an exact moment, but somehow, slowly, she vanished. My mind is a maze of walls and locked doors. Corridors I’m afraid to walk down. My emotions are bottled up tight and escape only as panic or anger. More often than not my thoughts die before they reach my lips from fear of being wrong. I’m afraid to draw because I know it won’t turn out right. I’m afraid to commit to writing anything longer than a blog post in case it isn’t perfect. I don’t trust my instincts because what if those feelings are from depression or anxiety and aren’t instincts at all? I’ve wasted so much time wishing to be someone else. Live in someone else’s skin. Deal with someone else’s problems.
I could spend forever wishing away the past, but if I do, I’ll only make the present another thing to regret. Somewhere hidden in that maze of tunnels beneath my Library, I think she’s still there. My Luna. If 2016 was about finding okay, I want 2017 to be about finding Luna.