I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t freaked.
Though the truth is it’s only starting to dawn on me how awe-some and terrifying it is.
I’m beginning to comprehend what I’ve done. It really is dawning; first the expectation of the rise, and then the initial tips of the rays. Pretty soon I think I’ll need the sunglasses.
With Koala proving to us more and more – by the day – how much his toddler vocabulary includes Hebrew words, I find myself stepping back and holding on to the counter for stability. I’m raising my child in Israel. Another country. Not where I grew up. Not where English is society’s first language.
It took an Israeli friend at our house on Shabbat to realize this. Sure, the huz and I have joked about his sudden bursts of ‘mayim!’ or ‘dai!’ but when a fellow native speaker hung around him this weekend, we started to realize that a lot of the gibberish we take for granted was actually Hebrew words like ‘rega’ or ‘sicah.’
And all the questions I used to casually wonder about come crashing down on me…
Will he have a thick accent in English? Will he be able to fully express himself to my parents? Will he shun everything related to my home-culture? Will he embrace it too much?
When I mentioned the weekend as a humorous anecdote to Koala’s ganenet today, she looked at me quizzically and replied, “Ma at rotza? Hu Yisraeli.”
As he tackles more and more words, I come to realize more and more I’m an immigrant parent.