How Harry Potter Helps Me Keep my Sanity

You think I'm joking? Twice in the last three days this happened. I suppose it's analogous to the old "walk away from it and breathe" methodology, but sometimes, you need something specific to walk away to.

Let me explain. Twice in the last three days, I reached a roadblock, a frustrating point, a point that made me want to cry on an assignment. And twice, in the last three days, I turned to Harry Potter, and my brain started functioning normally again. The first was a lab in marine science. I procrastinated for a good four hours on this lab. Why? Well, we had to research a species of zooplankton we observed under the microscope, and silly me didn't write down the scientific names of anything I observed, making it nearly impossible to find any information, let alone anything substantial and concrete. After striking out on all but one zooplankter, I finally found some info on the most common of the observed animals, but didn't think the information was substantial. I was frustrated, and was driving myself insane (can anyone say perfectionist?). You know what I did? I said, "Screw this, I'm going to go see Harry Potter."

So I went to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince with some floor friends at the campus cinema, getting a good deal of knitting done while there. I sat down, relaxed, enjoyed the show, and afterwords made fun of how Harry was high on liquid luck, how Ron was drunk on love potion, and how Slughorn was some combo of the two by just being himself. I was at peace. I got back to the dorm, sat down, and cranked out the lab in two hours (compared to the four I had spend procrastinating before). I was done and it felt awesome.

Now to the more substantial of the two situations. English paper. I had three reviews to look over. Two were peer reviews, and both of the reviewers loved my paper. I get to the third, more important one, the one from my teacher, which basically said I interpreted the text we were writing the paper on wrong, I don't understand the argument the author is making, and essentially, I'm an idiot (OK, these are strong words, she didn't really say that, I'm exaggerating, but that's how I felt after reading her comments). I really did want to cry. I wanted to hug my mom, have her comfort me, and tell me everything was going to be alright. Just looking at the paper made me want to burst out in tears. I thought I was going to have to rewrite my entire paper, and I didn't know where to start. I was just overwhelmed by the entirety of the comments. Tears are coming to my eyes now just thinking back to a few hours ago (yes, this was today).

I covered up the paper, the assignment, everything that made me hurt, climbed up to my loft, grabbed my copy of Deathly Hallows, and proceeded to finish off my latest re-reading. My mind returned to peace from the unruly chaos it was in, my emotions calmed, and my brain became rationalized. As I closed the book and scampered off to the bathroom, I knew what I had to do with my paper. The solution was so easy. I simply had to mess around with the parts where I mentioned the author's argument, and add in a paragraph explaining the similarities and differences between our subject positions (OK, perhaps this doesn't sound easy to you, but trust me, it is quite the simple fix).

Now, my world is at peace, and I can go to bed with a smile on my face and happiness in my heart.