Bring it language learning

Today marks the completion of level 4 of the colloquial dialect of Arabic that I have been studying. Phew! I may have missed studying the language in May, but this past month was slightly painful. Ok, maybe really painful. I am at that point in language learning where I am no longer a beginner, but I’m definitely not a “master” of anything. So I just keep pushing forward. Anyone who knows me knows I’m not a quitter and kind of a perfectionist, so I will conquer this language eventually! The final for this class was to give a 15 minute presentation about my childhood to my classmates, which I did not completely butcher = success, right?

I’ve started tutoring at a new school and it has been a breath of fresh air. After normal class I am able to spend a couple hours at least a few days a week talking with my tutor. We talk about language, culture, life, families, medicine, food, and so many other things. I have been practicing storytelling, so she now knows about the plots of several of my favorite books (childhood and adult), things I love to cook, more than she probably ever wanted to know about working in hospitals in the U.S. and many other random topics. It has been fun to be able to use all of these words that I have been learning over the past 7 months to start to make meaningful conversation.

I recently found a picture I’d taken in our language coordinator’s office back in November. I feel like it is a great reminder for now to push through when I’m just ready to be a “good/decent” Arabic speaker (although this may be too ambitious as many study the language for 2 years full time and then maybe still aren’t fluent until they have spoken the language for 10-ish years). I still have a long way to go, but I’m up for the challenge: bring it language learning!

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4 Responses to Bring it language learning

  1. Ackley, Dick says:

    Excellent letter, Ruth. I love the tone – struggle, grit, determination, dependent on God – love the quote at the end! I hadn’t heard that one before, but it’s true. I pray that God will give you ability to mimic what you hear and to use it often so that you can begin to even think in Arabic! Stay at it; I am proud of you.

    Dick

  2. Mary Ellen McMoran says:

    Hey girl! So proud of you!! Keep up the good work. At what point do you get to start utilizing your nursing skills?

  3. Adele Kemp says:

    Dear Ruth,

    I can’t imagine how hard it must be to learn this language. But since you sound like a “never-give-up” kind of gal, I know you’ll do just fine. It was so nice to hear that you’ve made quite a few friends there already. Do you know how much longer your studies will last…..not ten more years, I hope! Haha! Hard to believe you’ve been there 7 months already.

    Sean has three other students staying at the host family with him. They are not allowed to speak English in the house. This is the second year for the other three so Sean is really struggling.

    I had cousins from Georgia visit me yesterday. We had a great time remembering when we were children visiting our grandparents farm. Our grandmother used to make the most wonderful doughnuts and we’d eat them hot, rolled in powdered sugar. They had a Lilly pond in front of the farm house, lined with weeping willow trees. It had frogs in it that would croak all night and keep me awake. Ah, memories!

    There is so much going on in the world right now. It is so wonderful to know that we live in the safest place in the world…..no matter where we live! Peace…..not as the world gives!!

    Always remember that I lift you up everyday concerning so many things, including your learning this new language. Have a great day, Ruth!

    Love, Adele

  4. rudycassol says:

    Asking for Him to teach your tongue…we are about to embark on this language learning journey, so thanks for sharing your heart on this subject!

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