As I reread the Harry Potter series, I am repeatedly blown away by the wisdom of Professor Dumbledore. In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, he tells Harry, "It is the unknown we fear when we look upon death and darkness, nothing more," (page 556).
I think this quote is so great. Literally, it makes a lot of sense. Metaphorically, it's profound.
I'm at an age where my whole life seems to be about change. Moving to new cities by myself, entering the work force, deciding to go back to school . . . a lot of my decisions seem scary. Maybe you feel alone because all your friends are getting married and moving away. Maybe you feel that you are incapable of being a good mother to the baby growing inside of you. Maybe you just aren't sure what it is that you want out of life. But so many good things can come out of the unknown.
Without conquering the unknown, Harry Potter would have just lived a miserable life with the Dursleys. He wouldn't have found himself at Hogwarts. He wouldn't have met and grown to love Ron, Hermione, and Ginny. And although his life was often hard, painful, and exhausting, Harry wouldn't have destroyed Voldemort if he had just stayed in the corner, sucking his thumb.
Yes, Harry is a young, fictional character. But take a look around at all the people you admire and I'm sure you'll see the same principles at work.
So, here's to standing up tall. Here's to remembering who we are and that we're loved. Here's to embracing the unknown!