Friday, 12 September 2014

not my usual kind of post


Usually life is busy and I fritter my days away worrying about trivial things like getting dinner on the table and having enough clean school t-shirts. In the past few weeks I have been having trouble sleeping through the night, a sure sign of anxiety. There is change in the air and conflict all around. I think I am unsettled by current affairs. It must be because my life is good!

The war in the Ukraine seems terribly close, extremists from where I live take their twisted convictions to fight in far flung places, the Midlde East is once again exploding..... I find it difficult to judge if the world is going to pots or if the all permeating constant news coverage is making it appear so.

And as if this worry about the downward spiralling state of the world wasn't enough, the country I have chosen to be my home is gearing up for a big decision. Monumental is maybe a better word? The people of Scotland will vote next week if Scotland should become an independent nation or if it should remain in the Union, the United Kingdom of Great Britain. The referendum campaigns on both sides are playing with peoples' emotions, they are painting a bleak future and accuse each other of fear-mongering and lying. It is rather difficult to keep a clear head. Talk about the referendum is everywhere and not an hour passes with at least one mention of the upcoming decision day. On the telly and the radio, in the papers, on the playground, in shops, on social media, everywhere. I am quite frankly tired of it all and look forward to move on, no matter what the outcome of the referendum will. Because this is what we have to do and only time will tell how our future will be affected.

What I find most difficult to understand that there is so much talk of "us" and "them". Who is "us" and who is "them", and why, and where to I belong?

I am a foreign national in this lovely country but I am allowed to vote. I have heard more than once that it is not the place to of people like me to decide what is good for Scotland, presumably because my family tree does not go all the way back to Robert the Bruce. I find this offensive. I consider myself a valuable member of Scotland's society, and have been living here since 1998, it is my home and all my children were born here. I have no intention of moving away, unless maybe to a nursing home in France when I am eighty, for the warmth and wine. I do very much think that it is my right and my duty to participate in this referendum. 

I have sent off my ballot paper a week ago. I have voted to remain in the Union if you want to know. I will happily embrace independence if this should be the outcome next week because the world will continue to turn no matter and we'll have to do our best to look after this premature baby.

In the meantime there is plenty to distract me. I am awfully busy today. I have a GP appointment for one child, another one has been vomiting, there is a Birthday dinner to plan and cook and a Birthday party to prepare for. A dinner party (evening wear compulsory) for Annie and her friends, followed by party games. Yikes. Wish me luck. If I am not catching the sick bug I will almost certainly collapse on the sofa on Sunday. Have a great weekend. Cx

23 comments:

  1. Hear, hear, Christina.
    And there's a lot of folks here too with twisted convictions who are off to fight in the Middle East. It is truly frightening. I have actually stopped watching the news and reading the papers. What good am I to my children if I lie awake at night worrying about the state of the world?
    Hope your Sunday is a relaxing one xxx

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  2. This is a very thoughtful post. There is so much happening, so much destruction and horror. I think the best thing we can do is to create a happy and safe place for our family and this is exactly what you are doing. I read your posts and admire everything you do. Keep believing in the power of love. xxx

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  3. Hi Christina, I, like you, just cannot wait for the referendum to be over, though regardless of the outcome, I think there will be lots of unhappiness. I wholeheartedly agree with you that you have the right to vote. X

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  4. A thought provoking post there is so much happening in the world its terrifying all we can do is crate a secure loving environment for those around us. I will just be glad when the referendum is over whatever the outcome.

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  5. Monumental is the right word I think, Christina, whichever way it goes. Best of luck with the birthday and dinner party (how civilised, at least I hope it will be!). I'll keep my fingers crossed that no one else comes down with the bug. Enjoy the weekend. xx

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  6. Watching from the sidelines Christina and wishing all my Scottish neighbours well - it's a big decision and although very unsettling, it's probably good that people are taking it seriously. For what it's worth, I'd be voting as you did if Scotland was my home too.

    Friends in the Middle East relate their tales of horror and I weep, but I'm also hearing tales of help coming from unexpected quarters and it gives me hope that even in the darkness, light is possible.

    Wishing you well for all your parties and planning... deep breath required and then go, stay healthy and enjoy. These are precious days!

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  7. I understand, Christina. I can't believe my own capacity for worrying, it's truly boundless. My mother is Syrian and while I'm not in contact with relatives there, I wonder all the time whether they have been victims of the war. I hope that your country comes to the right decision in the vote. It does seem scary and I wish for the best outcome. Take care. I had a child at the doctor yesterday, just for a well check-up for her birthday, but I never enjoy going. I hope your vomiting one gets well very soon. Take care and have a good weekend.

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  8. The news is just as saturated with referendum talk here in England and I think a lot of us will breathe a sigh of relief when it's over, whatever the outcome. I agree, the news around the world this summer has been more horrific and worrisome than usual and it often makes me feel a bit hopeless about the state of the world. Small kindnesses have never mattered more. I hope your very busy day goes to plan and you get to slump on the sofa later with a large glass of wine. :-) xx

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  9. Life of a Mother is always full of stress, and with so much going on that is out of your control no wonder you feel anxious. I am a full time worrier, I worry about everything, things I have no control over but still it sometimes gets the best of me. Take a deep breath you sweet thing, close your eyes for a moment or two and just breath, and know that life moves on whether Scotland moves along or stays where it is. The will always be war I am afraid, but there will alwyas be love and good.
    Good luck with your day, have a glass of wine tonight and look in on your beautiful children as they sleep and know that life is really wonderful.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  10. Worrying is the worst thing. I know because I can fall into the "worry trap" quite easily myself. It's one of the reasons I love knitting so much. Picking up the needles and watching one of my beloved British shows, or spending an hour or so looking through projects on Ravelry always helps me calm down a bit.

    That's so interesting that you are hearing that it's not your place as an immigrant to make the decision as to whether or not Scotland gains its independence. Canada, more specifically Quebec, has had to endure a referendum vote. When the separatists were narrowly defeated and Quebec remained part of this country the premier of Quebec got on TV right after the vote, clearly very upset, and blamed the result on the immigrant population. It was a very bad moment. It made him look like a total ass.

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  11. I think you have every right to vote, though I also think that Scots people living down here should also have the right. I have gone from ambivalence to quiet frustration with all the talk down here about the referendum and beginning to think that we should all have had a say in it, as whichever way Scotland votes, it will mean big changes for us south of the border. I suspect the biggest problem will be that it will be very close and there's going to be a lot of unhappy people.
    When I watch the news each evening I hear my mother's words when we children were fighting - if brothers and sisters can't get on, what hope is there for the world? Her threat was sometimes that she'd bang our heads together to knock some sense into them (I don't think she ever actually did it though).Do you think it would work with some of our leaders?
    Hope you have an anxiety free weekend.

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  12. Unsettling times indeed. I definitely think you have a right to vote, although it seems unfair that my husband who is a Scot does not get a say... Although he would the same way as you. I hope the tummy bug doesn't spread and you have a good weekend.

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  13. Well said, Christina! You have as much right as everybody else to vote, I get so frustrated when others can be so small minded. It is very unsettling at the moment and i will be glad when a decision is made. I really feel for people having to make this decision and vote either way, there is so much media coverage and it's very hard to know the right path to choose! Good luck with organising the dinner party, you sound so busy at the moment! Have a great weekend! :)

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  14. My eldest son is beside himself with anticipation over the Scotland vote next week. I think it will be a shame if Scotland decides to go it alone, but as you say, what will be will be. I'm so sorry to hear that you are feeling full of it all at the moment. I really hope that you don't catch the bug. I always think that if the mother goes down, the ship is sunk! That poor journalist has been on my mind an awful lot. It makes me by turns very sad and very angry. I just cannot imagine what he must have gone though. Sometimes the state of world is enough to make me cry.
    Here's hoping you get restful sofa slumbers, my friend.
    Leanne xx

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  15. I've found the news over the past few months utterly depressing. It's gotten to the point where we don't have it on now during the day between plane crashes (too close to home) and poor journalists (what's beheading mummy? why would they want to do that? Are they not alive anymore then?) I can't take the questioning. The debate in Scotland is almost light relief. We'll see what happens. Hope you mange to find things more restful and escape the sick bug!! xx

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  16. The news can be so very dark at times can't it, almost overwhelming. There's lots of coverage of the referendum down here too, although I'm sure it's far more intense in Scotland. I hope the union holds, but whichever way it goes I hope Scotland and England will always be on the same side. As a resident of Scotland it is of course right that you should have a vote. I hope your little one is better soon and that you don't catch it. Have a good weekend, CJ xx

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  17. It's hard to fathom world-events at the moment. We no longer have television reception, and though many would consider me ignorant, I find not hearing about many traumatic current affairs makes my life much less complex. I can choose to worry about my own little circle, and live in blissful ignorance of all those further afield.
    I hope Sunday comes around quickly for you.

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  18. I've been watching the lead-up to the referendum with interest from little old New Zealand. I too, cannot stand the 'us vs them' sentiment, it's a surefire way to build up resentment which leads to unrest and we don't need to look too far in recent history to see what happens when one group feels marginalized. Personally, I think you absolutely have the right to cast a vote so I am glad to read that you have done so. Happy birthday to Annie and enjoy that well-deserved rest on Sunday x.

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    1. Hi, I'm another Kiwi who suddenly finds Scotland's referendum very unsettling. To think the United Kingdom might not be that 'United' is pretty scary, to be honest. Some of the comments that have been published here are scary; students saying they'll vote for independence so they don't have to pay university fees. We can all be so short-sighted and selfish in our voting, can't we? (A good reminder to myself, who has yet to decide how to vote in our own General Election next Saturday.) A big week coming up. All the best, Scotland! BJ

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  19. The news is very hard to listen too some times. I find myself not wanting to tune in an listen, but then I think that is a bit like burying your head in the sand..........a difficult one.

    I hope your weekend goes well and your party is enjoyed by all. There is nothing trivial about making meals and laundry they are at the heart of the home and make them tick. :)

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  20. I hope you find some time to take care of yourself, you deserve it x

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  21. Thanks for your comment on my blog, Christina. I completely share your views.
    On a happier note, I'm also delighted to discover another Scottish blogger, and I'll look forward to reading back through your blog.

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  22. A well put case Christina and it is lovely to hear your views and rationale for voting no. I agree entirely that it is nigh on impossible to get a handle on any facts. I envy you your clarity of thought as I am still on the fence, albeit leaning towards a yes.

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Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment, I love to hear from you, I really do. I sometimes reply by email but I am not all that reliable... Christina xx