It’s interesting for me, with Harry, because throughout the series he’s so much a boy in search of a father and yet at these times of real stress it’s his mother that’s a place of refuge … so in fact what I wrote about Harry being incredibly loved in his earliest days is measurably true, that will literally have given him protection that no one can undo. His brain will have developed in a way that Voldemort’s brain didn’t because Voldemort was, from the moment of his birth, institutionalised. So I suppose Lily was representative of safety, in a way that a father couldn’t be because he’s constantly told that he looks just like his father, he’s got to live up to the expectations of his father, his father, his father but Lily is something different, Lily’s the person who stood by the cot and tried to stop her baby dying.
J.K Rowling on Lily, The Women of Harry Potter. (via morglins)