I am a major Potterhead. I spent my entire childhood thumbing through worn out copies of the Potter books. The first page of my Philosopher’s Stone is torn and flies away every time I open it. I can’t bring myself to get the book rebound. If I do, it won’t be my book anymore. That page flying away is proof that that book is mine. I can recognize my book anywhere, it doesn’t need to have my name scribbled in it. Those books have gone through a lot with me. They have supported me through breakups, through failing exams, through working through teenage issues. They have helped me make new friends, better friends, all Potterheads like me. My current boyfriend and I bonded over Harry Potter. My best friend and I had a tradition where we would gift each other something Potter related every birthday. I have the Deathly Hallows chain, Salazar Slytherin’s ring, Potter Shoes, Potter socks. My obsession will never end.
But the most important thing about Harry Potter, is Magic. It made me believe in Magic. The books would make me pick up pencils, twirl them in the air with ‘a swish and a flick’ and wait for the spell to work. I’m old now. I know that fantasy isn’t reality, but maybe Magic is still real. And if each and every Vet Student doesn’t believe in Magic, then they will never appreciate what I have come to appreciate- our profession IS magic.
I am the girl that read Potter and Herriot side-by-side. I am the girl that empowered herself with reading about Hermione, and learnt that calves are like Disney creatures when they are born. And I grew up to be that girl that believes so strongly, that this is magic. I grew up to be that girl that truly believes that change comes from us, that we empower ourselves. Hermione taught me that we have to read, we have to prepare, and we have to learn everything there is to know if we truly want to master our profession. The library has the answer to everything. It has the answer to “What is hiding in the Chamber of Secrets”. It also has the answer to “Hypoadrenocorticism is truly suspected when the ratio of Sodium to Potassium is?”
The answer is “less than 27”.
I read that in a reference book. I could not find it on google.
Hermione empowered me. She made me believe that I could be what I wanted to be, that I could obliviate my parents for the world, that I could be a better witch than most were at her age. I want to be a better doctor than most are at my age. I want to be well read, well learned, and be able to do a physical exam so well that I don’t need to take an Xray!
Rowling wrote and wrote about how Hermione faced problems because she was a Mudblood, but not many because she was a witch. She should have. Because I am a girl that grew up believing that I would not be looked down upon just because I was of the gentler and fairer sex- and yet we are studying in a place where Viva professors come and laugh at us when we cannot handle large animals the way they can. That- let me assure you- is not because I am a girl. It is because Mumbai does not have a prevalence of large animal practice. I spent one month working with Dr. Asbe in Indapur ( a gem of a person) and I now know how to correct complete Uterine Torsions in buffaloes.
I recently attended a surgery at one of my internship rotations. A dog’s genitals had been ripped open by a wild boar because his owner had decided to take him on a hunt. When the surgeon gave us this information, a “tch” of unhappiness escaped from under my breath. Unfortunately he heard it, and decided that I had trouble looking at all the blood on the table. Actually, to be fair, I do not know what he decided. But I do know that he disapproved. He considered my “tch” as a sign of weakness, that I couldn’t take the harshness that a doctor would have to face in his many cases.
But I am a girl that grew up on Hermione’s side. I am a girl that believed McGonagal was the best and fairest professor there was. I am a girl that believed Luna Lovegood could have been my best friend. I am a girl that believed House Elves should be freed, that the Houses should be united and that Viktor Krum is hot. I am a girl that cannot have blood on my hands, that cannot watch an animal suffer just because his owner thinks he is Ramsay Bolton. I am a girl that believes showing emotion on hearing a client’s side of the story does NOT make me weak. I am a girl that breaks down when a dog dies under my hands on the table. I am a girl that laughs when the client tells me her puppy attached onto her breasts to suckle. And all of this does not make me weak. All of this gives me the power to connect with animals on a level that I did not believe was possible. Potter made me believe in myself. All of this…… is my magic.
And this is how I am at clinic every time I am asked to do anything: