What a night for politics last night eh? I don’t know if I have spent months in a Labour echo chamber, if I happen to have mainly like minded people around me or if I let hope over run my brain. But here I am, back to our withering earth with a bump. I know I am not alone in feeling the despair of five more years of Tories, especially the unproven live wire that is Boris Johnson. Austerity, no deal Brexit plans, crap deal Brexit plans, no climate change acceptance, rising homelessness, more food banks popping up, our NHS on its knees, a leader that to date in his career has not shown an ounce of compassion for anyone in need. The thoughts have been spinning around my head since the Exit Polls confirmed my worse fears.
But, and there is a but, a ray of Winter sunshine breaking through this bleak Friday 13th. There is compassion, there is love and the people that showed their humanity throughout this election race are still there, still giving a damn. My social media feeds have been full of people trying to pull this back together. And we can pull it back together, or at very least patch up the holes in the blanket we all need to huddle under.
How? For me, it means understanding that there is a good chance we are not going to be looked after by this Government and making as many provisions to look after my family as possible. Saving as much money as we can, even if that is very little. Ensuring we waste less and save more is important on our limited budget at all times but now it is critical. Throwing myself into mastering growing veg on our allotment plot – as I am not confident that the Brexit plans will be as smooth as our yellow haired leader declares. Paying as much forward as possible by donating as much time and resources to people who will undoubtedly be in greater need under this conservative rule. Doing my personal best to reduce waste and live as lightly as possible on earth – as I don’t believe this Government (especially if paired with Trump) will be prioritising the environment. I believe the science is correct and our planet is struggling. I fear on a global scale we may be too late but on a personal scale I can still take full accountability.
If one good thing is to come out of this Government it is that people will have to pull together or be pulled apart. Divide and conquer is not an option I want to think about and for that reason I am going with ‘A team is only as strong as its weakest player’ and doing all I can to ensure that no-one falls unnoticed to the sidelines. If now is a time for anything, it is a time to hold ourselves accountable – as we will need to be – and do our personal best. So, I am going to be paying even more attention to what is happening locally and rallying against anything I don’t like. Library closure? I will be there. Food bank collection? I can pop a few tins in. Single Mum struggling? I may not have much to give but my kettle will always be on and we have enough food to share.
Now, more than ever, is a time where it truly might take a village as the saying goes. It is easy to want to throw the towel in (or at your Tory MP maybe?) But, with people often living away from close family and not having strong communities to rely on, maybe that will be the blessing this election result brings us? There will some things we cannot change but we can all be compassionate. When the chips are down, if we can pull together and find compassion, solidarity and community spirit, all is far from lost.