Essay Being Bilingual Is Not Always Been So Effortless For Me

979 Words Oct 29th, 2016 4 Pages
Being bilingual has not always been so effortless for me. I was born in a refugee camp and can speak from experience. Before I was born, there was a civil war broke out in Somalia; my parents home country, we fled to a refugee camp situated in Dadaab, Kenya. Once safe, the struggle with nature began. Four kids out of eight survived past the age of three. I was the third to survive, breaking the cycle. Shortages in food led to malnutrition and we found ourselves eating spoiled food to survive. Shortages in medical supplies led my entire family to suffer from diseases like malaria. Then we were in a second camp: this time in Kakuma. Although living on the brink of poverty, the refugee camps became home to me. In Kakuma the refugee kids and I went to school where we learned songs with some English words about America, songs which my sisters and I still sing:
I lived a carefree life in Kakuma. Life in the camps was all I knew for the first five years of my life. At the age of five my family finally immigrated to the United States in 2005 after many trials of health examinations.
The America they showed us in Africa was nothing like the America we experienced. Out of nowhere, my family was expected to know and understand the English language. My sisters and I found a love for Barney and Friends. I began to recognize the words from Barney’s “I love you” and began saying “I love you” to my mom instead of “waan ku jecelahay” or “ani ki jecelah”. It 's the same phrase with the same…

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