'I want to be a Welsh speaker because...'


#445

I promised my son that I would learn the language wherever he settled, and he came to university in Wales and never left. So my grandson is at Welsh school, and I want to be able to speak Welsh with him and with my daughter in law. In one way, my family has gone full circle. My father was born in Newport in 1920, to a non- Welsh speaking family. But when he was at school, he asked if he could learn Welsh, only to be told it was a waste of time and money, so he was not allowed to. He lived long enough to know that his grandson was a fluent Welsh speaker, and that his great grandson would be too.


#446

I really enjoy reading stories like this. For anyone who says “language doesn’t matter,” stories like this contradict that statement. If language was only a means of communication then the loss of Welsh in the 1800s-1960’s would not have mattered. Language binds a people together, linking generations and provides a pathway to share a heritage.


#447

Because I come from Wales and learning the language is like opening the door to a secret room in my home …

The best thing that’s happened (or rather, the best thing that is in the process of happening) is that Wales is becoming visible to me in a new way. I was always surrounded by Welsh, of course, but I took for granted that it was something incomprehensible and ‘for other people’. Now I am one of those people!


#448

Oh, that’s a rather lovely turn of phrase… would you mind if we quoted you on that? :slight_smile: :star:


#449

Not at all!


#450

Fab-tastic, diolch :slight_smile:


#451

This is such a great thread. It’s wonderful to read all the reasons for learning Cymraeg.


#452

That’s really beautiful and poignant sentence, Rebecca. Very memorable and it brought up own memory when I began to understand Welsh. I’ve never been to Wales but discovered a lot of Welsh ancestry and it felt like I found a long lost family that I was welcomed into.


#453

I live in Wales. When I have learnt Welsh I will be able to communicate with my Welsh family in their native language.


#454

I want to be a Welsh speaker because it should be my first language and I love the secure feeling of connection with Wales and my past family that it gives me.


#455

I’m doing the O.B.O.D course and love the sound and look of Welsh words so thought I’d give it a go.


#456

Croeso, NoraNJ to SSiW. From your Username, do you live in New Jersey? I only ask because I recently started a Weekly East-Coast US Welsh Meetup. We meet on Thursdays from 7-8PM. If you like to join or come be and check things out, you are welcome to do so. We have SSiW members from Maine, Maryland, Florida, Alabama, Pennsylvania and Delaware.


#457

This resonates with me. After the end of the Great War my grandfather was the schoolmaster at Llanfair PG in Anglesey. It was a tough time post war with three kids, flu pandemics shortages etc., and they ran out of money. So the boys got to go to sea for four year apprenticeships at the ages of 12 and 13!! Sailed from Liverpool and were gone. Their parents thought they could get by with keeping their daughter at home. My grandfather told the boys - ‘speak English like an Englishman and you will be ok, forget welsh.’ So I agree - it wasn’t about killing or disrespecting a language, it was about survival. The daughter was brought up bi lingual because they knew they could look after her. My dad spent nearly 50 years at sea and only came ashore when I was born (he was 60!)After all of that time away he still managed to instil in me the belief that wales was our home. ‘Jesus Christ was born in a stable’ he would say ‘didn’t make him a horse did it?’ It’s what’s in your heart.


#458

That’s a memorable quote. Diolch am rhannu, Richard-Thomas-1. Thank you for sharing.


#459

I want to be a Welsh speaker because I truly don’t believe I have what it takes to converse in another language. Also because I am embarrassed to be Welsh and unable to speak my native language.


#460

You’d be surprised how common that feeling is among people who haven’t yet had the experience. But I can tell you with absolute certainty that you have the neurological ability to speak Welsh to the same level as you speak English… :slight_smile:


#461

Thanks Aran, I’m really enjoying this course and so I am going to prove myself wrong!


#462

Sing out in here any time you’re stuck, and all the people on here who’ve been down the road ahead of you will help keep you pointed in the right direction… :slight_smile: :star2:


#463

I suspect you will Lucy-Ford! Another member @rebecca wrote this beautiful sentiment about her Welsh learning experience. I hope it has meaning for you.

Because I come from Wales and learning the language is like opening the door to a secret room in my home …

The best thing that’s happened (or rather, the best thing that is in the process of happening) is that Wales is becoming visible to me in a new way. I was always surrounded by Welsh, of course, but I took for granted that it was something incomprehensible and ‘for other people’. Now I am one of those people!


#464

Because I live in Wales and I want to speak with welsh speakers in welsh