Six Things Hermione Granger Taught Me
In the past, we have written birthday tributes to our beloved characters, such as Draco Malfoy, Neville Longbottom, and the namesake of the entire series, Harry Potter. Today, we at MuggleNet are celebrating Hermione Granger.
Hermione is an iconic character that will be remembered for ages. Whether it is her wit, love for knowledge, or part in the golden trio, Hermione Granger is like no other.
Today, September 19, marks Hermione’s 36th birthday. To celebrate her life and achievements, I want to list some of the things that Hermione taught me during the Harry Potter series. Because of her, and many others from the series, I’ve become the person I am today.
1. Being intelligent isn’t a weakness—it’s a strength.
Hermione Granger is known for many things, but when people think of her, they associate her with being the brightest witch of her age. Throughout each of the Harry Potter books, she is the one who researches and reads constantly, trying not only to excel in all of her classes but also to help Harry rid the world of evil. Most of the time, when Harry and Ron get themselves into sticky situations, Hermione is the logical one to solve the problem.
For most of my life, I have been teased mercilessly for being the intelligent one. I have always been the one doing my homework and assignments ahead of time, making straight As, and reading for pleasure instead of being forced. When I was younger, I’d spend many nights crying, wondering why so many people labeled me as “the nerd” without knowing my true character. It wasn’t until I read the Harry Potter series that I realized something important. Hermione taught me that being intelligent isn’t a weakness. Instead, she taught me that being intelligent is a strength. Being smart, loving to excel in school, and reading for pleasure isn’t something to be scorned. Being an intelligent person may have made me an outcast among my peers, but Hermione taught me that it’s only temporary because one day, my intelligence will be valued. Because Hermione’s intelligence played a key role in Harry’s defeat of Voldemort, it taught me that being labeled “the nerd” isn’t a flaw. We “nerds” will play an important role in something in the future.
2. Being unlike everyone else is a positive.
Being the brightest witch of her age and valuing intelligence isn’t the only thing that sets Hermione apart. Because she is a Muggle-born, she is viewed as an outcast by much of the magical community. Many Slytherins and Death Eaters spent the entire Harry Potter series ruthlessly calling her a Mudblood.
Like Hermione, I have been the outcast for much of my life, only having a few close friends. When I read the Harry Potter series, this is one of the reasons why I instantly connected with Hermione. She taught me that being different is okay. Though it upset her when she was teased for being a Muggle-born, she proved to everyone that she was above the ridicule and the menace. She brushed off the harsh words and spent her days at Hogwarts defying everyone’s beliefs of Muggle-borns. Hermione’s difference didn’t hinder her magical abilities. If anything, it made her work even harder to prove she was worthy of being part of the magical community.
Hermione’s difference taught me that being unlike everyone else is a positive characteristic. By being unlike everyone else, she set her own standards and shocked everyone with her outstanding powers as a witch. She taught me that even though I’m different, it doesn’t make me any less of a person. It’s a person’s heart that truly matters.
3. It’s okay to be afraid of failure.
In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Hermione’s boggart takes the form of Professor McGonagall telling Hermione that she’d failed all of her exams. Later, Hermione reveals that her biggest fear is failure. Like Hermione, I have also spent much of my life being afraid of failure and disappointing the people I love. Also like Hermione, I have spent countless hours studying, trying to keep my grades perfect. Often, I have been teased of my fear of failure and my fear of disappointing my parents.
Hermione taught me that my fear of failure is okay. It’s normal, even, to be afraid of failing something that you work hard for. Being afraid of failing is a part of life. Because of Hermione, I’ve realized that being afraid of failing only makes me work harder to achieve my goals. Like Hermione, my fear of failure keeps my grades at perfection and keeps me striving for a better future.
4. Being a girl doesn’t mean you have to be strictly dainty.
Women in today’s world are told to be daintier and more girly, and while Hermione Granger had many moments where she could be considered “girly,” she was never classified as the strictly dainty, do-nothing-but-watch-the-boys kind of girl. From the very beginning, Hermione inserts herself into the action—standing up to trolls, saving Buckbeak, performing powerful spells, and fighting against Death Eaters. Sure, there are moments when Hermione proves that she can be the girly girl, such as at the Yule Ball and at Bill and Fleur’s wedding. However, Hermione is a character that will never be classified as dainty.
Hermione taught me that it’s okay to be a lady in today’s time and to be best friends with boys, fighting against evil, and doing all the things boys can do. She also taught me that it’s okay to be girly and wear dresses and make-up. She taught me that just because I’m a girl doesn’t mean I have to sit on the sidelines and watch boys save the world. Hermione taught me that I can save the world.
5. Stand up for what you believe in.
If there’s one thing we know about Hermione, it’s that she always stands up for what she believes in. She created SPEW to stand up for the house-elves. She risked her life by saving Buckbeak. She defended Hagrid at every opportunity, and she is never afraid to snap at someone who teased Harry or Ron. Hermione is every bully’s nightmare—she is the character to defend the underdog.
Hermione’s ability to stand up to those who abuse others taught me to have the courage to stand up for others who can’t stand up for themselves. It’s always slightly scary to stand up for others in the face of a bully, but Hermione taught me that I can. She proved, time and time again, that even though it’s difficult, it’s possible to stand up for others and to stand up for what you believe in. Hermione taught me that by standing up for what you believe in, it’s possible to make a positive change in the world.
6. Always fight for whom you love.
Hermione is a lover, and whom she loves, she loves with all of her heart. She fights for Harry during the entire Harry Potter series because she loves him deeply as a friend. She fights for Ron, in more ways than one, because she loves him romantically and as a best friend. She even fights for her parents by altering their memories, ultimately keeping them safe because of her love for them.
Finally, Hermione taught me that I should always fight for whom I love, no matter the consequences. There is no greater joy in life than to know that you gave your all, fighting for someone whom you love deeply. That is what truly matters in life—love. Hermione played a key role in teaching me that.
Thank you, Hermione Granger—not for being the brightest witch of your age, but for teaching me valuable life lessons that I continue to remember to this day. Thank you for giving me a friend during the Harry Potter series. Thank you for being you.
Happy birthday, Hermione. May your days be filled with joy as you continue to fight for what you believe in, continue to be a brave, intelligent woman, and continue to love others—always.