Bluffing, Brexit and the Black Dog, or, “How to lose friends in a single blog post”.

We live in interesting times.

A few weeks ago, the majority (albeit slight majority) of people in this country decided to believe the lies, the bluffing and the abject ignorance of a bunch of upper-class nitwits and dangerous, right-wing manipulators and ‘take our country back’. Presumably to the Dark Ages.



I do hope they are delighted now we have The Gorgon in No 10, a racist megalomaniac as Foreign Secretary; incompetence personified as Chancellor; a coup to oust Corbyn that was about as successful as Jim Murphy’s stint as Scottish Labour Leader; Labour NEC rewriting the rule book as they go along with increasing hysteria and Stalinist regulations on who ought to be allowed a vote in the leadership contest; Caroline Lucas somehow managing to stay as cool as an organic cucumber as Andrea Leadsom gets given the ‘hippy job’ and, of course (and, arguably, most importantly) Pokemon GO distracting everyone nicely as they wander around in a zombie-like trance bumping into lampposts looking for things that aren’t really there.

It’s enough to drive a gal to wine, Twitter tantrums, more wine, hiding under the duvet and not-really-coping-very-well-with-all-of-this-at-all.

We went on holiday, a little two-centre jaunt to Wales and Dorset. We went the day after Brexit was announced, and I think it was probably quite a good move that we were in a relatively news-free tent environment for two weeks. We did have the radio, but it was mostly used for mortifying our fellow campers with my singing along to Radio 2 and exclaiming on a daily basis how much I have a girl crush on Ken Bruce, and listening to the Wales matches in the Euros. We spent so much time exploring (seriously, we managed to do so much every day, it’s no wonder the children were fit to drop by 9pm every night) and being out and about that I wasn’t bombarded by Radio 4 as I would have been had I been at home.

I will blog more about our trip when my heart is in it, because it really was a wonderful fortnight and I now have some excellent recommendations of things to do in Dorset such as ‘go to the tank museum in Bovington, even if you have zero interest in tanks, because you will by the time you come out’ and ‘don’t go to Bournemouth’.


Weymouth Harbour. It’s awffy pretty.

In the meantime, however, I have to do something to get on top of this creeping dread and anxiety that is coursing through me again. As you’ll know from my previous posts, I have sensed for a wee while that the Black Dog might be coming back and, as you probably also know, I’m not fearty when it comes to talking about mental health issues. I will admit right now that I’m rather frightened by how quickly this particular fear – for want of a better word – has hit me. The worst thing about it is that I know what the trigger was – and it was the political, social and financial catastrophe that we find ourselves in. That is something that is completely out of my control. Short of leaving the country, there is absolutely nothing I can do to protect my children from the damage Brexit will do; and that terrifies me.

I am heartbroken. I am desperately worried. I am deeply hurt that so many people couldn’t see beyond their own shallow perceived gains and not at the greater good, the choice that benefited more people, flawed though the EU undoubtedly is. Yes, I understand why some people voted to leave – because they are poor, they are angry and they are disaffected. Unfortunately, they are angry with the wrong people – the very people who have now created the most right wing government in years, and those who went before them , are the ones that we should be angry with. They robbed us of our jobs, our security, our public services and our NHS – not Europe.

I have woken with a heavy heart every day this week since returning from Dorset to my humdrum, normal existence, and lived each day with a sense of impending doom, a fear creeping over my shoulders and up the back of my neck as though a ghost is behind me, and I don’t feel strong enough to battle it at the moment. There have been a few rays of sunshine – some wonderful friends who have helped me more than they could possibly know with their words (you know who you are, I hope!); and that’s what I’m desperately clinging onto right now, that this catastrophe will forge bonds between the good, and the kind, and the generous and welcoming in this country, will bring people closer together to help one another in the face of adversity.

Next week, I am going to do everything in my power to try and get on top of my mood. Better eating, earlier nights, more walking or cycling, more yoga, more meditation – this week I have felt too weak and panicked to move, and I know that is the Black Dog’s favourite trick. We will reassess the situation towards the end of the month, and I am open to going back onto anti-depressants if that’s what I think I need, I’ve had plenty of experience of these cycles to know what I can handle myself and what I need extra help with.

I’m not scared of the Black Dog anymore, just tired of him. I’m petrified of Theresa May, though.