My aunt, Yolanda, came to visit us from Spain for 4 days. She was in the US visiting my mother in Florida and decided to do a quick run across the country to meet P. It was great to see her. The short visits are hard. I want to spend time with our guests doing touristy things. I want to have them watch P so I can have me time and get my hair colored or get a facial. I want to do nothing but continue on with our routine and make them a part of it. I want to do too much.
My aunt’s visit gave me insight into how to handle things when my mom comes in November. Up until now I haven’t had to consider P’s division of time between me, my mom and the things she wants to do for instance. Now I will. The last day Yolanda was here P was so over having company. She had a major melt down and when I asked her what she wanted she said “you Mamma”. I held her and felt awful. I knew I was done entertaining and back to full focus mom.
I guess what I learned is that every day I must set time aside for the things P wants to do: play in the playground, go to the carousel, bake cookies, play with mud, etc. And I will also have to set time aside for just the two of us to spend time. P got to a point where she didn’t want Yolanda to touch her toys. She said she didn’t want to “share anything anymore”. I knew she was done sharing me. None of this is Yolanda’s fault. She did nothing but be kind to her. It was all me. I should have been respectful of P’s time with me.
Another interesting find was how little Spanish P is speaking. She understands Spanish very well but she isn’t speaking it at all. This is again my fault for not being diligent about only speaking Spanish in the house. I know P has to focus so much harder to speak or listen to Spanish. Sometimes, when I need P to get tired so she’ll take a nap I’ll only talk to her in Spanish and boom, she’s out. It’ll take about 15-20minutes and her brain hit’s overload. That should have been my cue to know she’s really not fluent.
Now, I’m only speaking to her in Spanish. I’m also getting her to speak it to me by not doing what she’s asking until she asks in Spanish. If she wants water or to watch TV I will get her what she wants when she has tried to say it in Spanish. The words are starting to come. I will feel like I have failed her if I don’t pass on our native language. Whatever it takes I’ll do so she can be bilingual.
By the time my mother arrives in November I think she’ll have a much better grasp of the language and it’ll start to flow much better with a second Spanish speaker in the house. P isn’t the only one learning a second language. D is also picking up on it and therefore starting to speak it more with her. I thank him for the amazing effort and desire to help P be a more well-rounded individual.