Doesn't everyone (who loves the series) have a "Harry Potter story"? A story of how they first read it, became hooked and well... it's all uphill from there.
Mine started in the 4th grade, the year the first book was released in the United States. 1997. A glorious year. We had a portion of each class where my teacher would read a book aloud to us, and after we finished Holes by Louis Sachar, he told us he'd be reading a new series called Harry Potter.. the first book was Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. I was hooked and thus began the demise of my elementary school career. The next two books were both out while I was in elementary school. I would sit at my desk, hiding my book and reading, munching on some hot cheetos (which became my official Harry Potter reading snack.)
After reading the Prisoner of Azkaban, I lent the book to a classmate. He and I got in several heated discussions on pronunciation of names and such.. and he ended up stealing my book. It had been my favorite book of the series, and I was pissed.. but the school year ended and I never saw his Harry Potter stealing face again. (Psbtw, if I ever saw him again I would rub it into his FACE that I was right on how to say Sirius. It's "serious", not "cyrus" you loser.)
After that point, I became aware of each book having a release date. I had to wait in anticipation for each and every book to be released. For the 4th, 5th and 6th books, I would make my mom go get the book for me, then I would do the exact same thing with each of them. Take the book, take my Harry Potter snack (which was now Hot Fries, not Hot Cheetos).. shut myself in my room and ignored everyone and everything until I finished. Usually in one day. After that, I would re-read it at a slower pace to take in everything fully.
Then the last Harry Potter was released, just a few weeks after I graduated from high school. Almost 9 years since I first was introduced to Harry Potter. I was at the store before they opened just to get this book.. and my Hot Fries. I got home and I started reading, and was 3/4 of the way done by dinner time. Then I started getting sad, realizing that was the last time that I'd ever go through that routine. That was the last time that I would get absolutely giddy with excitement about the release of a Harry Potter book.
It was the end to the story that I'd been reading since I was 9 years old. I would never again read a Harry Potter book for the first time. From then on it was just re-reads.. (and re-read I did.) But I comforted myself with the fact that there were still a few more movies to be made. That was something.
Now here I am, and the last part of the last movie is going to be released in just a few days. It has been over 13 years since I was first introduced to the world of Harry Potter, and Thursday at midnight, the start of Friday, it will come to an end.
As sad as I am.. I'm ecstatic to see the last installment of this revolutionary series.
I know I'll cry. And I know when I'll cry.
I know I'll laugh.
And I know for several days after seeing it I'll be a depressed blob of sadness. So bear with me.