Stacy Stevenson, Contributor
One Ohio mom, after finding herself woefully unprepared for her daughter’s 11th birthday last week, received the following email from said birthday just moments after her child’s official special day started.
To: “You Call Yourself A Mom?!”
From: “THE 11th Birthday”
Date: February 3rd, 2018
Time: 1:03 a.m.
“Get out the sorting hat, y’all! It’s someone’s 11th birthday! But, oh snap! You know what? It’s actually been your daughter’s 11th birthday for roughly an hour now and there’s been no letter. I mean, what’s the hold up?
We birthdays have a hierarchy, you know. I was once worthless, near the bottom with that messed up 27th birthday no one likes. But because my girl J.K. Rowling (holla back!) gave the 11th birthday all-star status back in ’95, I’ve been sitting pretty for awhile now.
This is my year in your house, so I am pretty disappointed that there is NO. LETTER. YET.
I understand, you’ve been busy. You have a lot on your plate and while you may have had some kind of loosely cobbled together creative plan for whimsy and delight involving a paper mache owl and whatnot, it’s really about the letter.
I would know. I’m the ELEVENTH BIRTHDAY.
Your daughter has been holding on to that expectation of a trip to Diagon Alley for books, quills, cauldrons and dung bombs (she’s a little odd, you might want to look into that) for at least the last six years.
Who are you to rob her of this last thread of unjaded wonder and optimism in the world?
Who are you to speed along the inevitable and crushing weight of puberty and the loss of childhood innocence upon her?
I ask you: How do you even look at yourself in the mirror every morning? Honestly.
You cannot stand there and act surprised. This is not my first rodeo, Mom – if you can even call yourself that!
I’ve been around.
I hear the whisperings.
Your daughter’s unbridled addiction to the Jim Dale narrated audio books, her conditioned switch to calling you ‘mum’ and using ‘foul git’ in reference to her little brother, are overt signs alerting you daily to the absolute expectation of receiving a letter from Hogwarts. TODAY.
Don’t you remember her reaction to your offer to send her to a boarding school? She balked, of course.
You reminded her that Hogwarts IS a boarding school. She was not buying it.
‘It’s not a MAGIC boarding school’ she said. You knew then only Hogwarts would do. You knew. Yet, you did nothing.
I have faith that you can correct this potentially traumatic wrong you have done to your child. She will wake within hours expecting that letter with its magnificent wax seal.
She’s been asking about wax seals for weeks.
The scrawled words, composed in what could not be mistaken as anything other than a quill dipped in a pot of ink. NOT a knock off calligraphy pen you know is in the basement craft box.
And don’t you even dare try to blame this on a wayward Weasely owl or bored Death Eater. No, no, no. ‘He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named’ has no time for your pathetic lack of birthday planning.
You’ve known for 11 years this was coming. You’ve known.
But let’s turn back to what’s important. Me. I am the 11th birthday.
I have clawed my way to the top of the birthday hierarchy and I demand to know where my letter is. So, let’s just forget for a minute your daughter’s imminent need for therapy over this travesty and talk about what’s going to happen next.
You WILL find some parchment paper and a wax seal pretty damn quick or I will lose all respect as the best birthday.
If you so coldly relegate your child to squib status, it’s over. It’s over for both of us. You’ll set the precedent for a non-magical avalanche of parents casting off the obligation to make the 11th birthday start with a paper scroll and end with a ride on a steam train that appears in front of their house, AS IF BY MAGIC!
Can you really shoulder that kind of anti-Dumbledore sentiment on your own? Can you?
So, again. I ask you, for the love of all that is Hogwarts. Swear to me on the remaining thread of Nearly Headless Nick’s neck skin: that letter will arrive. POSTHASTE.
THE 11th Birthday”
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