"My Wish for You": Letters from IES Abroad Moms, Rachel Rice

Rachel Rice
May 11, 2018

from Rachel Rice, College Relations Manager

Dear Zeke (4 months old),

Years from now, you might wonder why I sometimes speak to you in French, and why your passport photo shows a squishy little newborn. You’ll look at photos of a 6-month-old you in front of German castles and wonder why I took you on your first international adventure when you wouldn’t even remember it. Someday you’ll ask me why we call Uncle Isa “Amca” Isa, and why his accent and religion are different than ours.

Well, little one, the answer to all of these questions is the same – because from the moment you were born, I promised you that I’d show you the world, in all its beauty and complexity. I want you to speak another language - we’ll start with French, but you can take up Urdu or Mandarin – I’m not picky!

"I want you to speak another language - we’ll start with French, but you can take up Urdu or Mandarin – I’m not picky!"

Speaking another language means you can connect with people of another culture, and that is invaluable. I want you to travel to new places because I was lucky enough to travel abroad when I was young, and it changed my worldview. It showed me that there are different ways of doing things, from breakfast food to national healthcare systems, and that we can learn from those differences. And we call Uncle Isa “Amca,” because that means “Uncle” in Turkish, and that’s where he is from. He’s promised to tell you all about Turkey and Islam, so that you learn respect for other cultures and religions.

So, sweet boy, for now we’ll focus on eating, sleeping, diapers, and getting you to roll over. But sooner than you know, you’ll be saying “Maman, j’ai faim!” Someday your eyes will widen as you see a rainforest or a cathedral, and your passport will fill with so many stamps you have to get extra pages. You’ll study abroad (maybe with IES Abroad, but no pressure!), and I’ll come visit you and wonder how my baby boy grew up so fast.

Oh, the places you’ll go! But for now, sleep. S’il te plaît.

Read more Letters from IES Abroad Moms.

Rachel Rice

College Relations Manager

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