Some of you know that English is not my first language. I grew up in the Philippines and learned the Cebuano dialect of the region where my family lived before I knew how to speak the main language of the country, which is Tagalog or Filipino. By the time I started Kindergarten, I could understand both English and Tagalog without formal training. Blame it on the TV, ya know.
So anyway, we learned our ABCs along with our Abakadas. When we were home, we always spoke in Cebuano, though our conversations would be peppered with English and Tagalog words. (The funny thing is whenever I talk to my family on the phone, my husband--who doesn't know any Cebuano or Tagalog at all--can catch snippets of the conversation and actually understand (partly and with lots of mostly correct conjectures) what I'm talking about. It's because of the English words that get mixed in with the "gibberish-sounding" Cebuano words.)
Because of this, I get a little bit insecure with my writing. I know my weaknesses. I know where I'm at a disadvantage (I'm looking at you, pesky prepositions!). I have to work extra hard just because some things/phrases/sentences/whatever don't come easily to me. Or I have to second-guess myself because my brain can only process so much at one time. For instance, after talking to my mom on the phone for more than an hour in pure Cebuano, it took my brain a minute to switch back to English. It was actually faster--say, a millisecond--when I wasn't pregnant. Yep, pregnancy brain is like having half a zombie brain. Everything's in slow motion. I found myself yelling something to my kids the other day, and when they didn't respond, I realized I was yelling Cebuano words. Not English. Sigh.
|Photo by Jetheriot|
What about you? Are you multilingual, too?