What To Do When You Suffer From House Identity Crisis

What To Do When You Suffer From House Identity Crisis

Gryffindor or Slytherin? Gryffinclaw or Slytherpuff?
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When you're a Harry Potter fan, one of the most important things is which Hogwarts House you are part of. You have merchandise that bears your house colors, you get into arguments with fellow fans about which house is better, and you are fiercely loyal to the house that you are proud to call yours.

Unfortunately, it's not all fun and games. Not everyone feels like they fit into their house. With the Pottermore test, people who thought they belonged in one house were suddenly thrown into another. Of course, you could deny the result you get, but the questions, choices, and corresponding house results were written by J.K. Rowling herself. You don't want to go against that. My sister went from being a loyal Slytherin to being a Hufflepuff; a complete 180. Luckily, my sister merged nicely into her new house, and now proudly wears her Hufflepuff hoodie out whenever she can. But some people don't get so lucky.

Evanna Lynch, otherwise known as Luna "Loony" Lovegood, claimed Ravenclaw until the test placed her in Gryffindor; Ron Weasley himself was placed into Hufflepuff. It's very difficult to uproot yourself from one house to the other when you are so sure that you project the traits of the house you are loyal to. Another issue that arises is when you take the test multiple times, just to check, and get two different results. What then? What happens when you face a House Identity Crisis?

Obviously, don't panic. Remember that your house doesn't always define who you are. Peter Pettigrew was a spineless coward; Cedric Diggory and Nymphadora Tonks were the bravest Hufflepuffs the series ever introduces; Regulus Black willingly went against the Dark Lord, to stop him from creating more Horcruxes and extending his reign; and we can't forget Gildoroy Lockheart, who's Ravenclaw tendencies were only useful in making him famous. These characters were sorted into houses that boasted one trait while they showed another. Not all Gryffindors are brave, not all Hufflepuffs are stupid, not all Slytherins are evil, and not all Ravenclaws are smart. It's important to remember this if you don't feel smart enough as a Ravenclaw, or brave enough as a Gryffindor.

So what happens when you get placed into two different houses? In the Harry Potter universe, a character who sits under the Sorting Hat for longer than five minutes is called a hat stall. This is when the Sorting Hat has a tougher time deliberating which house it wants to place you in, and according to Pottermore's website, only happens once every fifty years or so. The closest to come to hat stalls were Hermione Granger and Neville Longbottom. The sorting hat spent nearly four minutes, according to Pottermore, deliberating whether or not to put Hermione in Ravenclaw or Slytherin. Neville, on the other hand, was determined to be placed in Hufflepuff, while the hat wanted him in Gryffindor. The only true hat stalls known to Harry were Peter Pettigrew and Professor McGonagall. Like Hermione, the latter had the sorting hat caught between Ravenclaw and Gryffindor. The former had the hat caught between Gryffindor and Slytherin (like I said, not all Gryffindors are brave). Sometimes, people cannot be pinned down to one specific trait. It's okay to have one foot in two different houses, it just means you're a well-rounded individual.

Personally, I have always been a Gryffindor. My first take on the Pottermore test was Gryffindor. My second time, however, I got Ravenclaw. All of my friends believe I should be Ravenclaw, because intelligence is my biggest trait, and I hold it in a higher regard compared to anything else. Again, I point you in the direction of Hermione and professor McGonagall, who are both fiercely intelligent, fiercely brave women. I might not be brave according to Harry Potter standards: I don't throw myself willingly into danger, I'm introverted, I have anxiety. There are things I do, however, that do make me brave. Getting up and delivering a speech, or making an important phone call; when I do things that normally make me anxious, it makes me feel braver.

That's another thing: people come in all shapes and sizes, with any personality you can think of. Just because you don't fall under the direct, immediate definition of a house (bravery, intelligence, ambition, loyalty), it does not mean you are not a member of your house. Just because you are a Slytherin, it doesn't mean you are the worst person alive. Slytherins can be good. Slytherins are not evil, they are ambitious. They know what they want and they take it for themselves, no matter who or what gets in their way. Yes, most Slytherins in the series are evil, but I did point out that Regulus sacrificed himself for the good of the Wizarding World, to see Voldemort crumble. That doesn't seem like someone who is evil.

To be honest, you don't need to worry if you suffer from House Identity Crisis. What matters in the Harry Potter universe is that you are your best self. Whether that is as a Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, Slytherin, or any combination of the four, as long as you feel that loyalty, that is what matters. My sister might be a proud Hufflepuff, but personally, I am a proud Gryffinclaw. Nothing and no one is going to take that away from me.

Cover Image Credit: nocookie.net

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Poetry On Odyssey: Where Sisters Bloom

Stand with us!

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Why is it the womanhood is so vile?

People bash our bodies opening us up like

watermelons to see how sweet we are inside.

Squeezing our hopes and dreams like oranges into a glass cup.

I think you're threatened of our bodies sweetness.

Threatened of our anger.

Get used to it.

we are every fruit you wish you could pick from the tree.

When our trees shed leaves you run

because god for bid my ovaries drop an egg

and my legs split like a canyon with a sanguine

river flowing for a week.

You get down on your knees begging

for our bodies so long that

when you stand your ankles crack like

the noise I make on my way up the stairs from the

night shift.

I let my spine arch on the bed creating an invisible

hill that you will try to climb.

We are becoming stronger by learning not to brush

off the

cruel cat calls you make when we walk by

but instead we raise our middle fingers.

Tell you to woman up

Tell you to grow some damn ovaries because

lets face it your balls will never mount our courage.

No its not that I don't think you're strong

but I know you need to change the way you speak to women.

Stop calling us hoes because we wont send you nudes.

Stop shaming us with our body parts.

Stop saying "that's' gay" why is something weird gay.

Do you remember when I said you are threatened of our anger?

No baby this is rage.

This is something I don't like to wear its like

a heavy coat that clings to

my sweaty caramel skin during Florida winters.

Do not be threatened of our sweetness.

We are honeycombs

golden yellow and thick.

We love the feeling of our honey dripping

on your lips.

We want you to covet our thoughts not our thighs

take in our cellulite like oxygen

but not until you learn.

To march with us. Fight with us. Show pride with us,

when we wear our flowy shirts and tight jeans

because don't you dare say my lacy bralette was asking for it.

If you understand now.

Hit pause.

Take a stroll over to the orange groves

and peel back our thick layers of glory

and now you can taste our royalty.

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To Percy Jackson, I Hope You're Well...

Percy Jackson and the Olympians and the Heroes of Olympus are both series which helped shape my life. I want to share my love for them here, with you.

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Two days before I moved from New Jersey to California, I had a late night at a friend's house. Just a few miles outside of my small town of Morris Plains, his house was out of the way and a safe haven for myself and my mother during a harrowing and strenuous move. My father had been across the country already for almost two months trying to hold down his new job and prove himself. His absence was trying on me (at the tender young age of nine years old) and my mother, and we often spent time at my friend's home, as our mothers got along well.

That night came the time to say goodbye for the very last time, and as our mothers were tearfully embracing at the door, he ran up to me and shoved a book in my hands. Bewildered and confused, I tried to give him my thanks but he was already gone - running away in a childish fit that expressed his hurt at my leaving more than any words he could've said. I looked down at the book in my hands. It was a battered copy of Rick Riordan's "The Lightning Thief," with its binding bulging slightly out in a strange fashion, the cover slightly torn and bent, and quite a few pages dog-eared. The book wasn't in good condition, but I took the time to read it. I was ensnared and enchanted by the lurid descriptions of mythology, of the lovable characters of Percy, Annabeth, and Grover, and the upside-down world they lived in. Over the course of the move and our eventual settling into our new California home, I devoured the series adamantly, reading "The Battle of the Labyrinth" almost five times in the fifth grade and eventually finishing out with "The Last Olympian." The series accompanied me through a difficult move and a whirlwhind of early puberty; by that time, Percy and friends I knew intimately as my own companions. When the series ended, I happily parted with it, and began other literary conquests (namely in the realm of classics).

After an almost year-long break, I re-discovered the series in sixth grade. I hadn't realized that there was a companion series to the first, in fact, a continuation - The Heroes of Olympus. I lapped up "The Lost Hero" and "The Son of Neptune" with greed, and eagerly awaited the arrival of "The Mark of Athena" the following year.

One of my most vivid memories of middle school was sneaking downstairs the morning of the Kindle release of "The Mark of Athena", sneaking past my parents' bedroom as stealthily as I could in the wee hours of the morning to get my kindle and immerse myself in the world. I believe I finished it in about two days. For the next two books in the series, I followed the same pattern: get up early, read it as fast as I could get my hands on it. "The Blood of Olympus", the last book in the series, came out in my freshman year of high school. After finishing the second series, I shelved my much-loved paperbacks for good, and turned myself to other literary pursuits. I eventually relocated to Virginia, and went to college. Percy and friends were almost forgotten until my first year at the University of Virginia.

I was devastatingly alone my first semester at university. I didn't know what to do with myself, entombed by my loneliness. However, at the bottom of my suitcase, I found my old Kindle Paperwhite, with both of Percy's series neatly installed for me. I made a resolution with myself: I would reread both series, reading only at mealtimes where I sat alone. By the time I was finished, I wanted to see where I was compared to when I started.

Re-reading the series was like coming home. It was nostalgia, sadness, and ecstasy wrapped into one. I delighted in revisiting Percy's old haunts, his friends, his challenges. However, it was sad, knowing I had grown up and left them behind while they had stayed the same. It was a riveting memory train which made me look forward to meals, and eased my loneliness at school. Gradually, as the semester progressed, I was reading on Percy's tales less and less, as I found my friends, clubs, and organizations that gradually took up more and more time.

I still haven't finished my re-read, and am about halfway through "The Blood of Olympus". I've come a long way in the almost decade since I first received that tattered copy of "The Lightning Thief", and I still have some ways to go. So thanks, Percy, Annabeth, Grover, Jason, Piper, Reyna, Nico, Frank, Hazel, Leo. Thank you for growing up with me. I'll never forget you.

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