It’s a very strange day to be a Brit living abroad. I feel a little bit like I’m free floating, waiting for someone to tell me what to do next.
The polls have just closed on the ‘Brexit’ – the referendum as to whether or not Britain should leave the European Union. My mind boggles at the fact that this vote even took place – it seems like the kind of isolationist, nationalist idea that should have died out 100 years ago. Yet as I look at politics, in Britain, Europe and here in the USA, I see more and more xenophobic, isolationist politics. That’s a more in depth conversation though, and for another time.
I don’t believe a Brexit will come to pass. I certainly hope it won’t. This has the potential to massively negatively affect my life, as well as the entire country and the thousands of Brits living in Europe and abroad. I got to vote, courtesy of my proxy (thanks Mum!), and I’ll still be awake when results are getting announced through the night in Britain. So although I feel hugely disconnected from my country today, I’ll be keeping an eye on it, hoping that everything will be okay.
The sense of impending doom and disjointedness is compounded, in my personal case, by the US federal government. I’m waiting on my employment authorisation renewal, and if it doesn’t show up before my current one expires, I’ll be unable to keep working until it does. Which puts me in a weird, stressful limbo, at the mercy of the people at customs and immigration services.
Hopefully both these things will work out – the UK will realise that the European Union is greater than that sum of its parts, and the USCIS will realise that they have deadlines to stick to and process my case quickly. But I don’t know yet. So I sit, and wait, and paint rainbows on my nails to pass the time.