Saturday, August 6, 2011

Harry Potter and the effects of the Goblet of Fire

I was introduced to Harry Potter in a strange way.  As often is the case, this story starts off sad, but in the end, there is a happily ever after, so to speak.
I worked in Market Research, on the phones and enjoyed the work, very much.  It was easy and there wasn't too much in the way of politic to get in the way of my family life, which was important because I was a single parent.  In my first year there, I made friends with the owner of the company and I didn't even know it.  He was just some guy in the lunch room as far as I was concerned, and i didn't give it much thought.  He even helped me out with the supervisor a couple of days later when I had to move all of a sudden and needed emergency time off.  He smoothed it over with middle management and there was no disciplinary action.  We became friends from then on, and it was then as well that I found out he was not just a middle management worker, which is what I expected, but the owner.  He was an awesome friend throughout the seven years that I worked there.  
On the first day of spring break, 1999, my son was hit and killed by a stoned driver.  Work was awesome, they arranged a week off with pay, helped me with the funeral and had people check on me during the first couple of months after he passed.  I became hard, and probably drank more than I should have, but I had good support at work and before things became out of hand, they were handled.  However, I was still grieving and often I would go into work, depressed, sad, lost, but that subsided as time went on.
Now my boss, being the kindly man that he was, suggested I read Harry Potter.  This man was an executive, he wore suits, ran meetings, organized social events, was a mathemetician at UBC, had actually read all the books so far and he wanted me to read a children's book.  I told him that I might read them, but I was not overly fond of children's books.  He kept up and kept at me, until finaly I relented.  I got through the first book in just a couple of days.  I couldn't put the book down, in fact I read it on the bus to work, had it on my lap under my desk at work and I just kept reading every chance I got.  I caught up quickly and by the time book 4, Goblet of Fire came out, I was under it's spell completely and chomping at the bit to read it.  It was perfect timing for me to read that book when I did.  I have fallen in love with Harry, and seen myself feeling as though my own son had come back to life, and when Cederic Diggory died, and so suddenly, I could relate to the fathers outburst, and it was then I finally let loose with a barage of tears that put an end to the misery I had been feeling for so long about the loss of my own son.

Needless to say, I have enjoyed the entire series of books; the movies, the memorabelia (I even have a Hedwig packsack, some chocolate frog haulographic cards, some knuts, some t-shirts and more).  I am a total fan, simply because of the healing properties within it's pages.  My son was 12 when he rode his bike over to the other side of the hedge, he always wanted to be mage, and well he was just an incredible kid.  I thank J.K. Rowling for bringing him back to life for me in a small way, and for helping me come to some closure with The Goblet of Fire in particular.

Matthew Justin Graham
December 10, 1986 to April 13, 1999

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