I love comfort food from my native country – fatty, fun and delicious! Comfort foods like adobo, pencil, lumpia and menu – they all remind me much of my native Filipino culture. To this day, I am drawn to, and reminded of, the rich culture of the Filipino islands along with the many close relationships that mean so much to me. Comfort foods aren’t good for me – common sense says that I need to stretch myself out of my “comfort zone” taking on foods that add to life, health and well-being, even if I don’t like them!This is why I can identify with Richard Rodriguez and his cultural struggle with language as he describes the moving of his family to the United States from Mexico.Specifically, Richard Rodriguez shares in his essay, “Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood” a challenging and stretching time in his life for the sake of personal growth and development, adjusting from the comforts of his native family and language into a new language and culture. He expresses that to become a “healthy” working part of the United States he would need to learn and adapt to the American language despite the challenges in the home, family and culture. To all of this, I agree!

English may be a worldwide common language but learning the tongue can still be a challenge for foreigners coming to America.Having moved from the Philippines at age 21, I found that engaging in a new language brought much suffering and separation as I stepped out of all that was comfortable to me and then learned to think and speak in all that is relevant and “common” to the U.S. population and government. English language and culture contrast with my Filipino educational background, my native Tagalog language, and my unique family culture.In parallel with Rodriguez, I knew the risk of losing my sense of identity, my degree of individuality and even my favorite foods.Nevertheless, I knew that I must open up my heart & mind to new and different skil…

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