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Multilingualism// GCD

Both of my parents are Japanese, and either of them can’t speak English fluently. My mom always had doubts about Japanese education, which is why my mum let me attend a international school in Japan since 2 years old.

When I was little, I had negative thoughts and embarrassment towards my parents because they can speak no English compared to other parents. I didn’t like translating English to Japanese during parents teacher-led conference when we travel to different countries and even writing an email in English. To be honest, it is yet not my favorite thing, however, I am more appreciated to the fact that it gave me motivation to self- educate to become a close native English speaker. I remember I used to write down words, use a dictionary to search words and so on. Now I am appreciated to my parents because without this translation I did in the past, my English and Japanese wouldn’t be better. Although, my use of language has developed and I am capable to use both languages equally in a different situation, however, there are aspects of me I am more American inside but Japanese outside. As I grow older and older, my Japanese pride gets smaller and smaller, I really don’t know why, but I personally think my personality best fits in the U.S rather than here. But most importantly it is because I speak English more often than Japanese. English is the language that is been instructed in School, I listen and read it in English and I write in English than Japanese. Therefore, I sometimes question about my Japanese culture, even though I am pure Japanese and I never lived in a different country.

Furthermore, Stereotypically speaking, Japanese follows the rules, they are quiet, they don’t share their opinion frequently. This is not me. I am super loud, I love to share ideas and I somewhat follow the rules ( depends what it is) but not always. I also like to celebrate events and the fun fact is like I don’t like Sushi but I like sushi’s in America ( Spicy tuna rolls and California rolls).

As mentioned, I question about my culture and I believe that my Japanese pride will be taken away when I attend to a  University in the State soon and of course my English will be stronger than my Japanese. Because I have both languages, it expresses who I am. If couldn’t speak Japanese or English, I feel like I wouldn’t be the same- me. Thus, I always take it positively and it will help me in future internships and businesses.

Satono • November 30, 2018


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