This is the heartwarming story of a young girl, born at 23 weeks only, who made it despite all odds. Her parents believe Harry Potter books and their wonder and magic were what kept her fighting.
Juniper, who was born weighing only one pound, was in the incubator when her father opened up the first page of the first Harry Potter book and began to read. He knew, perhaps, that the little girl fighting for her life would love to hear about magic and flying children. He wanted to tell her about baby Harry who survived the most evil of all wizards only by the power of his mother’s love.
Harry Potter – A Favorite Book
Harry Potter was an all-time favorite book in Kelly Benham French’s household, according to an Upworthy report. Everyone, including her two sons, had read all the books. Her kids played make-believe Quidditch and even fashioned wands out of chopsticks.
In other words, the stories were considered an important part of the household. This is why Tom, Kelly’s husband, wanted to share the story they all loved so much with their premature daughter. He wanted to make her feel loved and protected.
Reading the book to the baby was magical.
The parents kept reading Harry Potter to the book. They deduced, from the pinging machine by Juniper’s side, that she loved Hermione, and was not happy with Hagrid’s voice. One thing was clear – baby Juniper was responding to the book.
Her temperature and breathing improved. Every time Tom would stop reading, her oxygen levels would fall, and nurses would urge him to start reading again.
Tom continued reading through Juniper’s early stressful days. In fact, one night her condition worsened and she was being rushed to the hospital. Tom started to cry on the way, distressed. “What if she never hears the end of the story?” he said. “What if she never learns how it ends?”
J.K Rowling’s Magical Response
Juniper made it through the night, and several other nights. In fact, the little girl is now 5 years old and very healthy.
When J.K. Rowling heard the story, she actually took the time to send them a package all the way from Scotland. With shaking hands and beating hearts, Kelly presented the package to Juniper, who opened it. Inside the pack were the original Harry Potter books. On the first page of book one, it was lovingly scrawled, “To Juniper, the girl who lived.”
The Family’s Own Book
Kelly firmly believes that Harry Potter books were what kept her family together in those tough days. The books gave her a lesson of love, and that anything is possible.
She has now started to read the books with Juniper, who is already hugely inspired by the Harry Potter books. The little girl dreams about Hermione, and sorts her chickens into Hogwarts’ magical houses.
Kelly and Tom wrote their own book about their ordeal, which is now published. The book talks about their trials, and how, in the midst of all that sorrow, Harry Potter gave them hope.
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