Oh la la! Too much today. Too much of everything. Just too much. So, I’d like to lighten my day and yours too. Have you seen this “too much” song by the Flight of the Conchords? Cute, right?
Recently, I had to return to it. If you have traveled to a foreign country, tried to learn a new language as an adult or are a parent of bi- or tri-lingual kids, have you ever thought that you might truly sound like this, too?
Humor and humility with a foreign language is key. Recently, after I had said my hellos and small pleasantries in Swedish to a pre-schooler at our children’s school, the little boy turned to his mother and said, about me:” Mommy, but why does she always speak English with me?” He then turned to me and said, in Swedish, “why do you always speak English to me? I don’t speak English. I speak Swedish.” We both continued to converse in Swedish about this and a few times, in the halls, afterwards, as well. His honestly was heartbreakingly sweet.
Yes, I do speak Swedish and French with an accent — and becoming fluent has been hard work for me. There are so many other thing I want to do other than, break my accent or fix my syntax. Swedes speak such fantastic English, it’s so easy to fall back into English, here but, I continue to try. If you are raising children abroad, is this a part of your day, too? What are your experiences? I’d love to hear from you.