What I Learned from Being a Hufflepuff
Hermione Granger and Luna Lovegood taught me about loving myself
Opinions / September 20, 2018
I am a Hufflepuff. I am loyal, kind, and particularly good at finding things. But a few years ago, I would never have admitted that.
I remember being called “weird” and a “know-it-all” every day. I remember the nasty, bitter tone that laced every vowel. I remember that pit in my stomach I’d feel. It swallowed me up instantly, cloaking me in shame.
Growing up, I struggled to love myself for who I was. I would stare in a mirror and just beg to be different. I wanted to be someone who wasn’t me. I wasted years trying so hard to embody this warped image of what I thought was normal. I struggled with pressure and anxiety to be perfect. I tried to be someone else with every fibre of my being. And I failed miserably at it.
The Harry Potter series was my go-to escape from the real world when I was a kid. I’d read my much-loved copies of the books by an open window, secretly hoping that I would finally get my Hogwarts letter. But the books ended up being so much more than a way to escape—through them, I could find strength and reassurance. Hermione Granger and Luna Lovegood, my two favourite characters from the series, were those pillars of strength.
Both women were true to themselves throughout the series. They never thought about being anyone else. It wasn’t until I got older that I realized the profound impact these two would have on my life. These strong women carried life lessons for me that I still reflect on to this day.
Don’t Shy Away from Knowledge
Everyone tried to shame Hermione for loving to learn. Did that stop her? Hell no, she just studied harder!
Her brilliance helped save the day on more than one occasion. Let’s be truthful here; if Hermione hadn’t been a “know-it-all,” Harry would have been dead by the end of the first book.
Hermione taught me that, no matter how much someone could try to shame me for enjoying to read, there is no such thing as too many books. There is nothing wrong with wanting to learn. I wake up every morning striving to make sure I learn something new because of Hermione Granger.
It’s Okay to Be Weird
Luna Lovegood’s entire legacy was being the “weird one.” People kept their distance from her and bullied her. They didn’t even try to get to know her.
Yet Luna was still her same eccentric self in every novel. Nothing seemed to phase her—she didn’t care what others thought of her because their opinions did not matter.
Luna’s positive attitude toward her personality is something I admire and try to draw from. On days when I feel like my anxiety is going to take control, I think about Luna.
Always be Kind
If I had to choose one thing that I learned from both of these incredible women, it’s that kindness should never be forgotten. Treating others with respect is the most important act of decency one person can show to another.
Whether it was Hermione using her wit to fight for House Elf rights or Luna’s unwavering loyalty to her loved ones, they always showed kindness to others. More importantly, they showed kindness to themselves for being their own people.
I quickly learned from Hermione and Luna that I could not be anyone else but myself. I couldn’t stop being weird. I couldn’t stop loving reading. I couldn’t stop being a nerd, geek, loser, or any of those cliche terms used to bring someone down.
Thanks to Hermione and Luna, I learned that it was okay to be me. It was okay to be a Hufflepuff. It was okay to be a know-it-all. It was okay to be weird.
It is okay to be yourself.