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"Dear Mr. Potter"
by: Sherry Griggs
My first introduction to you was unexpected and unbelievably wonderful. I was at dinner with my two young daughters when a man and his young daughter sat at the table beside us. They placed their napkins in their laps, checked to make sure their dinner was ordered and said their prayer. Then the father, with a hint of anticipation, leaned forward and asked his young daughter, "Are you ready?" She nodded enthusiastically with the widest grin on her face. The father then took out a book and said, "When last we saw Harry..." From that point on, I was hooked.
I saw in that moment how this novel, how this young man, this Harry, had profoundly impacted that relationship and would unknowingly do the same to the relationship between me and my young daughters. From that moment, we set about the task of getting to know Harry Potter and his wonderful friends, Ron and Hermione and his wonderfully magical world.
Just recently, my niece reminded me of a weekend that my daughters, my niece and I spent, on a pallet of blankets in the floor of my living room, talking about all the Harry Potter novels and the plots of each; how Book 4 was impacted by Book 1 and so on. She declared that one of her fondest memories. I agree. We each use that wonderful memory to cast powerful Patronus charms whenever life makes us feel as though we might never be cheerful again.
Together and with friends, we attended book premieres and movie premieres. We spent hours upon hours talking about Harry and what might happen next. We would spend weekends with each other and friends discussing at length what was happening in this magical world, what might happen and what it meant for us Muggles. The relationship between me and my daughters, friends and family was made stronger and deeper thanks to you Mr. Potter.
As a parent, I can tell you that finding a common interest with your children is not easy. Harry Potter, you gave us that. Together we planned our costumes for premiere nights; we danced when we purchased our tickets for the movies; and we cried when our favorite characters died. I know that I am closer with my children and family as a direct result of the mutual love we have for these wonderful characters and this wonderful world.
Thank you for being a part of our lives and for being a part of the lives of future generations. I look forward to sharing these stories and these characters with my grandchildren and watching as they learn that "it's our choices that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities."
Read the other Finalists here: Finalist 1 | Finalist 2 | Finalist 4 | Finalist 5
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