I have decided to share with you my post that I wrote for Soph.Creates as a Guest Blogger. I really enjoyed writing about the idea that she suggested to me and thought that some of you guys would be interested in reading about it too.
As you’ll see, the topic is rather important to me and I do get a little passionate. I have not edited the post in any way since Soph published it to be able to keep it’s authenticity. Please let me know in the comments if you’re bilingual or just what languages you can/are learning to speak!
If you’d like to check the post out on Soph’s blog then click here.
I’m very excited for this post, not only because I’m guest writing for Soph, but also because I’m writing for a new audience. I really love finding new people to share my writing and stories with which is one of the main reasons that I agreed to work with Soph and share this post.
My name is Niamh from Niamh R Blogs and I write about all sorts of things, from lifestyle, to fashion, to entertainment and everything that comes in between. I was particularly excited when Soph mentioned this post idea of writing about being bilingual as I’d never ventured into writing about culture before. This is a new area for me so as much as I am excited, I am also rather nervous.
I’ve lived in South Wales all of my life and was taught Welsh as my first language. My Dad had learnt the language whilst in school and has spoke it ever since which is why him and my Mum (who’s from Northern Ireland) decided it best for me and my brother to go to Welsh speaking schools*. It was from learning the language at a young ge, and being taught at that not many people in Wales speak the language that made me so passionate about keeping up my skills and speaking it to whoever I could.
The language is one of the oldest languages in the UK and is similar to Gaelic and Corninsh in its sounding and derives from latin. Many people around the UK “don’t see the point in it” and describe it as a “dying language” which isn’t the fairest of comments when there are so many Welsh people pushing for it to become so much more.
I often see comedians using the language as a tool for their comedy and to an extent what they’re saying is actually rather amusing, especially to the Welsh. But, when this kind of influence is taking as more than a joke on a stage and people start bashing the language when they know nothing about it, that can really effect the progress that we’re trying to make with the language.
But enough with the negative ranting, as you can see I can get rather emotional over this subject. I want to share with you all of the reasons why I’m so in love with the language and why I will never stop speaking it.
Firstly, it’s because it’s my first language and also the native language of my home. I will carry this language everywhere I go and educate people on it’s history and meaning. When I\m meeting new people and they find out I can speak the language they almost always ask to hear some, which would then turn into me teaching them a phrase or two which is so cool as they start to learn about a language that, sometimes, they never knew existed.
We know that Wales is a small country anyway and I remember on a few occasions being abroad that people didn’t even realise that it was a country and that it was just the “West of England”. But instead of getting angry and annoyed that people around the world don’t know where my home is, I just enlighten them instead. I get to share my pride and joy of being a Welsh woman with others and then they find out about a place and language that they never knew existed.
Being able to speak this beautiful language is honestly one of the best aspects about me. It makes me feel different and proud of where I come from, and I know that I get to carry the history of my country every time I speak it’s language.
To me, it’s crazy how all of this passion had built up within me because of the single decision that my parents made to send me to a Welsh speaking school. This isn’t to say that Welsh people who don’t speak the language aren’t any less Welsh in anyway, just that with my personal story, it’s speaking the language that makes me identify with being a Welsh woman because I feel like wherever I may travel too, I will always carry the mark that Wales has left on me by speaking its true language, it’s Mother tongue.
Hopefully I have done this post proud as it deserves nothing less and hopefully you guys enjoyed reading of my experience of being bilingual.
Thank you again to Soph for letting me guest post!