Sunday, December 18, 2011
English & Spanish
I've realized how being bilingual affects my personality. The other day I was in Spanish class speaking in English with my friends, and some other kid that was not in the conversation asked me something in Spanish so I replied in Spanish, and one of my friends said that my energy completely changed when I switched to the other language. That surprised me, because I didn't know that, and I started to pay attention to it, and yes, it is true. I finally understood why I always rather act in English, or write in English, or have conversations about life in English, and why I use Spanish for real things, such as conversations about the things that are going on in the world, when I need to speak in public, or when I need a friend.
Spanish is my first language, so it represents a part of me that is real, a part of me that everybody can see, and a part of me that I have already figured out. At the same time, it represents my roots, so when I need to talk about a problem, I would prefer talking to my friends in Argentina, in Spanish. And then English is a language that I didn't just learn after living in the States for a year. I've also learned it through movies, books, music, and blogs, in other words, English represents the Art in my life. When I'm speaking Spanish, I can't get all corny and cheesy because I am not that kind of person, or at least I wasn't when I was living in Argentina, and it doesn't feel right. I also can't try to act because I can't be somebody else when I am speaking with that Argentinian accent that every single person from South America can recognize and that represents who I've been since the day I was born. But in English I can open up myself and be whoever I want to be, and use words like "passion", "romance", "being in love", without feeling awkward and uncomfortable, because I am still trying to build the person I wanna be in this country. The Lola that orders pizza in English, the Lola that says Hi to her friends everyday at school... that Lola was not born on March 31st of 1995. It is up to me to create that person according to who I want to be, what I want to do, and where I want to be. So in English I can put myself out there and express my feelings easier, because I feel like a whole new person. I can be artistic, and I can dream all I want, while in Spanish I have my feet on the ground and I am a little bit colder.
I love the fact that I have the ability not just of speaking two languages and experiencing two different cultures, but the fact that I shape myself according to where I am and to the things I've been through in that place.
And if you ever wondered, that's the reason why even though I am from Argentina, this blog is written in English. Believe me, in Spanish I wouldn't be able to talk about certain things. I would actually blame the Mexican and Venezuelan sitcoms for making some Spanish words so cheesy every time they talk about love or stuff like that, I don't know. But the point is that there's a lot of myself that people have to discover in order to get to know me 100%. In fact, there's a lot of myself left that I still have to figure out.