Today, August 18th, is a very special day. It’s Percy Jackson’s birthday!!!
Percy Jackson & the Olympians is a series that is invaluable to me and has impacted many different aspects of my life. Without Percy Jackson, I would’ve never got involved in online fandom, met my closest friends, or have continued read as much as I do today. But, the reason why Percy Jackson is so near and dear to my heart is because of what it did for me when I was struggling with ADHD in Middle School.
Growing up with ADHD was not easy. My parents and teachers did not know what to do with me. During my early school years, I struggled. I was a bright kid, but brightness can only take you so far when you don’t have the attention span to do your homework or listen to the teacher. As I grew older, I became more and more frustrated with my inability to focus leading me to be a pretty unhappy, unruly kid.
Since so many of my problems were caused by school, anything that I associated with school, like reading, became something I simply refused to do. For many years, I hated reading. Getting a kid who hated reading because of school and already didn’t have the capacity to sit still to read, was nearly an impossible task. Eventually, I did see that reading could be enjoyable because of Twilight (which a story for another time), but I still didn’t connect with reading in a way that a lot of other kids did. That is until I found Percy Jackson.
For whatever reason, I went to the library one day and randomly picked up Percy Jackson. The covers looked cool (and that was the reason I read the books I did in Middle School), and I had vaguely heard of the series before.
When I started The Lightning Thief, I was hooked. I never expected to read about someone my age who was struggling with ADHD, let alone an entire series about a cast of kids who had ADHD and Dyslexia. At the time, I needed to read a series about kids like me being the heroes and saving the day. I’ll never forget what Percy Jackson did for me during those years.
Percy Jackson will always be to me what Harry Potter was to other kids. It was the world I wanted to live in. It had the characters I wanted to be and wanted to be friends with. And it was the series I could see pieces of myself in. It was the series that made me feel like I could save the world.