Diagon Alley (SS 5)

Another week down… Can I just say that this week left me feeling exhausted and in need of affirmation from friends that could in fact make it through this semester? What a week!

This week’s HP chapter takes us into the actual Wizarding World, where Hagrid takes Harry to Diagon Alley to buy his school books. First we see the Leaky Caludron and meet Professor Quirrel, the latest Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Then they travel to Gringotts, where Hagrid has official Hogwarts business to attend to, but also to get Harry money out of his vault (damn did his parents have a lot of monies!). We meet a Griphook, the goblin that becomes significant in later books, travel under the city to the vaults and back out again. Feeling sick from the ride in Gringotts, Hagrid leaves harry on his own to get his school robes and unbeknownst to him, and new readers, we meet Draco Malfoy (my fav character). Harry spends the rest of the chapter hearing about a world that knows all about him, but he knows nothing about. He goes to Ollivanders to get his wand, and we find out that the wand that chooses him, also had the same core as the one who gave him his scar. By the end of the chapter Harry is left feeling overwhelmed and filled with questions…

Much like all us 1L students… and we are a month in.

Which brings us to this week’s theme: Learning new things about life and yourself can leave you feeling overwhelmed and overrated. 

Like I said at the beginning of this post, this week has been hard and for a lot of people I’ve talked to this week, they’ve been feeling the same. You would think a month in we would have figured all of this out by now, that’s not the case at all. On Friday I attended a lunch talk (for career and development opportunity credits). Walking in I was like, “adjusting to your 1L year”… lol haven’t we already done this by now? I sat down ( a little overwhelmed from class earlier) and listened to 3L students tell us the do’s and don’ts of our 1L year. Sitting in their awesomeness was difficult. They rattled off partial resumes and then gave advice and all I could think was… “damn, i know nothing”.

Earlier that day, in a class that I thought I was understanding a little (no where near complete understanding) the teacher crushed all feelings of hope. It was like being told I would never be good at this class, and in turn would fail…made for a difficult day. The week was long, the homework tiring and the classes hard…I left school Friday wondering what the hell I had gotten myself into and even more feeling like a fraud.

Then sitting down to read this chapter I found Hagrid’s advice to Harry leaving me in tears. Harry left Diagon Alley feeling like a fraud, feeling overrated and overwhelmed by all the attention people were giving him without him knowing anything about why he was famous or the magical world at all. And Hagrid said this:

Don’ you worry, Harry. You’ll learn fast enough. Everyone starts at the beginning at Hogwarts, you’ll be just fine. Just be yourself. I know it’s hard. Yeh’ve been singled out, an’ that’s always hard. But yeh’ll have a great time at Hogwarts- I did- still do, ‘smatter of fact.

I don’t want this post to sound like I’m all emotional and sad, it’s not like that at all. I thoroughly enjoy law school, it’s just overwhelming at times, and in those overwhelming moments it’s hard to remember the bigger picture. Then you talk to people (one on one, not lecture discussions of people telling you what they did) and you go dancing, and you laugh over drinks, and then you hit the books again because you don’t just give up.

So if you are feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, overrated or feel like giving up, know you are not alone. As 1L students we are all starting at the beginning, and as long as we stick together, be ourselves and keep on trying, we are going to make it through. We are all smart, we are all meant to be here and we will all survive… don’t believe me? Well just know Hagrid believes in you:

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Until Next Time,

Mischief Managed

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