We just had a lovely long holiday weekend. With PER traveling so much these days, it was extra nice to have him home. Sometimes when PER gets home from a trip, Aleksander needs a little time to get settled again. But this time, things have been great. Aleksander is even going right into PER’s arms at night to let his Daddy put him to bed.
I, on the other hand, am having trouble adjusting. At least when it comes to our German time. Whenever PER is home during the day, I have such a difficult time moving into – and staying in – German. I forget to make the switch at lunchtime. I usually have switched by naptime, so we’re still getting a story and song in German. I can remember to speak German when I get him after his nap. But as soon as PER is in the room, I slip right back into English. I’m really quite frustrated!
How do you OPOL parents do it? Maybe since you don’t switch, you don’t really have to think about it? But do you find it difficult when you’re speaking to your spouse in one language and your child(ren) in another?
Here’s another situation I haven’t figured out yet…. Last week, we were at the shoe store getting new sneakers and sandals for Aleksander. It was the afternoon, so I’d been speaking German with him. But then began the interaction with the sales woman. It felt so strange to speak German to Aleksander in front of her - more so than, say, in the checkout line at the grocery store. I think it felt more awkward, because she was actually part of the interaction. I felt I was leaving her out if I continued speaking German with Aleksander. So what do I do? Stay strict and speak German? (Setz dich hin. Ziehen wir die Schuhe aus.) Or be “polite” and switch to English? (Sit down. Let’s take off your shoes.)