From the day my first daughter was born, I knew my best gift for her was to transfer my language and culture. It was likewise for my husband.
My name is Sandra Ruiz, I am Spanish; my husband is French from Guadeloupe. Our two daughters are Irish.
Since I remember, I have struggled to learn new languages as I was raised in a monolingual family for 29 years. My first time learning a new language was when I was 12 years old, learning basic English in school; a few years later I decided to learn Spanish Sign Language. The learning process was joyful and pressure-free during these years.
Then, I arrived in Ireland in 2009, when I was 28 years old. Since then, I have embedded English, French into my life every day, and more recently, Irish Sign Language. The learning process of English has been very challenging, as it comes with the extra pressure of the necessity to use it for work. So based on my own experience, I was very clear about my responsibility to teach my language to my kids from the moment I got pregnant; I didn’t want my daughters to face the same challenges that I did.