10.28.2005

Sort of like an Englishman in New York

It is an odd and complicated skin to wear at times, being born into one nationality and being raised in another. For most of my life, I rarely thought about who I was in terms of my ethnicity. Now that I have a son and he's growing up faster than I can say his name, it's been on my mind a lot lately. My son is half Filipino American, half Swiss American. He is the most gorgeous baby on the planet, no offense to all of the other most gorgeos babies out there according to their mothers. He is the perfect blend of me and my husband, in face and in spirit.

Our heritage is his heritage, and we want to make sure he is proud of every part of his soul. We want to teach him Tagalog and Visayan (Filipino languages) as well as Swiss German. I can understand most of Tagalog and Visayan and some Swiss German but have a hard time speaking any language other than English. We also want to teach him French, Spanish, Italian and Japanese, but those are beyond our own ancestries (except we have a little bit of Spanish blood on my side).

So today I met with two other Filipinas and their darling sons. We're going to try to start a Filipino playgroup, and in the end, as much as it is for my son, it is also for me. I am hoping that he and I can connect (for me, reconnect) with this part of our lives and sustain it throughout the rest of our lives. We can learn this language together, as a team. I feel good about this, and I'm excited about it.

Plus, you know there's always going to be good food around if a bunch of Filipinas get together. Oh yeah - we love to cook, baby, and we love to eat. If I can't understand anyone I figure I can just shove food in my mouth and nod.

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