I definitely should give Henry a chance to practise his Icelandic at home. It would help him, plus I'd have more of an idea of where his language skills are at. I'm a bit self conscious about my Icelandic, it's definitely not perfect, and I definitely have to think more as I'm speaking. And don't even get me started about writing.
Anyway, when the midwife was over last time, she went on for a while about how important it was that Henry learn Icelandic, and said that I should be practising more with him. Then the other day I spoke to one of Henry's leikskoli teachers about his two and a half year old checkup, and she told me off a bit for not speaking Icelandic at home (spoiler: she wasn't really telling me off, but I was feeling a bit oversensitive from hormones and lack of sleep, so I probably definitely cried a little bit in the car on the way home).
So that made me realise that although I know I should help Henry to learn Icelandic, I feel weirdly defensive when people tell me that *. Like, I want to argue with them and convince them that I shouldn't have to, when in fact I intellectually agree that I should.
* Not you, Maja! I feel like you are probably one of the people who best understands the situation, because you're also in it - juggling nationalities for the win!
I think maybe it was because they were comparing our situation to other kids - there's one girl in Henry's class whose parents are a German mum and Icelandic dad, and she speaks fluent Icelandic plus a bit of German (I think). Obviously that guy is happy to speak Icelandic to his kid, because it's his mother tongue. Icelandic isn't my first language, and when Henry was little I prioritised being able to express myself wholly and naturally over teaching him Icelandic. I think I resent the implication that it's more important for him to 'fit in' with the Icelandic kids than to bond with me.
And there's a weird Icelandic nationalism that grosses me out a bit, too. Yes, some amount of pride is good, but I feel like it sometimes gets a little too close to racism here, like Icelanders are better just because they're Icelanders. Ew. No.
And I also hate the implication that I just didn't think about it, that I'm speaking English solely because it's easier (although why would that be such a bad thing?)
I did think about it, and consciously chose to speak English at home for a bunch of reasons. I'd hate it if his teachers think it just didn't occur to me that he'll have to learn Icelandic at some point.
Anyway, I'm glad I noticed my weird defensiveness, because there's really no harm in us practising a bit of Icelandic some of the time, and I think Henry enjoys it. Also because it's good for me to notice when I'm feeling a bit icky, and to figure out why exactly that is. I don't know if I have mentioned it before, but I sometimes get this anxious gut feeling, and my best method for dealing with it thus far is figuring out where it came from. And 90% of the time, it's something so little and stupid and un-worry-worthy, so it's actually pretty easy to reason the anxious feeling away. Whereas if I don't trace where it's coming from, I tend to just go around feeling vaguely worried for days.
Whew! That got long! Here's some photos!
|Felix and Ross|
|Slightly blurry, but such a good face!|
|Henry's still pretty anti-photo, but I asked him to make a dragon face, so he was into it.|
|Sleepy smile! I'm pretty sure it's just gas.|
Ah, those photos were a refreshing change from the rant. So everything else is basically awesome. This week is Ross' last week of paternity leave for the moment, so that's a bit of a bummer. Next week I'll have to figure out how to take Henry to school with Felix in the car, but I'm sure it'll be manageable. I have been meaning to do a practice run all week, while Ross is still here to help, but even though Felix usually wakes up around seven-ish and I know I should get up, the temptation to stay in bed is waaay too hard to resist. May as well sleep in while I can...
Felix is still super rad, he's started sleep for a four to five hour stretch from around 1am, so I'm catching up on sleep a little bit. Mum comes round pretty much every day to help with bathtime and burping, and to lavish extra attention on Henry. His sleep has been a bit erratic lately, he's been waking up a lot more and wants Ross to stay in his room. I figure he's just adjusting to the baby, and he was sick last weekend, plus he may be getting some more teeth? Just a little bit of everything, but I think it'll pass with time. Anyway, apart from that he's great, still really loving and adorable with Felix and everyone.
I'm feeling pretty good, still very much enjoying not being pregnant - the mobililty! The comfort! The unpasteurised cheese! I'm sure with a lot of distance, one day I'll reminisce about how nice it was being pregnant, but now is not that time. Oh, that reminds me, there's this post on Cup of Jo that rings pretty true for me at the moment. She's also had her second (and probably last) baby, and she writes about how she's kind of missing the tiny baby days, even while she's experiencing them. If you're into that kind of thing, read it, she says it better than I can.