It has been five years since my last post. Five years!
Looking back on the first couple of videos and blog posts for The Afrikaans Tutor, I get a big lump in my throat… Little did I know that shortly after I made these videos and started this project, our entire life would be turned upside down. I look at the young girl in the videos and think: If you only knew.
Shortly after these videos my husband was diagnosed with stage 3B cancer and Crohn’s Disease. It was totally unexpected and we were totally shocked. He was only 29 years old at the time. It came out of nowhere, we didn’t even really know what Crohn’s Disease was! So instead of making YouTube videos, writing the book I dreamed about and developing Afrikaans material, I supported my husband who had to have a major operation and six months’ chemotherapy. It was the biggest challenge I’ve faced in my entire life. As if all of this wasn’t terrible enough, we were totally shocked to find out that all of his treatments could affect his fertility. It felt like so many dreams were shattered. All at once.
Fast forward five years and today Francois is 100% healthy. He is going for his fifth year of remission and everything is going really well with us and with his health. In times of trouble, we run towards each other instead of away… but it was still a lot to handle for two twenty-somethings. After all the treatments his tests came back quite good, but in spite of this, we have been struggling with infertility for the past four years. It has been heartbreaking, trying, frustrating and all consuming. But, we’ve also learned so much and we know we will never be the same again. We started our own YouTube channel (The Upside) where we document our life, our adventures and our infertility journey. I’ve gotten a lot better at making and editing videos, if I do say so myself 🙂
I’m sorry I just disappeared. Believe me, it wasn’t by choice. I’ve often thought about this little project that I started, but I never had the energy to take it up again. Here I am, July 2018, thinking about creating some language acquisition material for Afrikaans yet again. This time, I’m not going to give myself a deadline and be so strict with myself, but I am still here and I want to do something. I hope that I will be able to.
It might not be the project I hoped for, BUT we did vlog our holiday in Germany in Afrikaans with the idea of 1) creating our own memories, but 2) creating some Afrikaans material for YouTube. Since 2014, Francois learned German and is almost fluent and we are now learning French together (I have a slight head start since I studied it for three years way back when at university). I know how much it helps to watch vlogs when learning a new language. Just hearing people speak as they normally would, helps me a lot. So I hope our vlogs help.
I don’t even know if any of you are still out there and if you will even get the message, but I am still here. And luckily, so is my husband 🙂
If you want to watch our Afrikaans vlogs in the meantime, here is the link to our Afrikaans playlist:
Please leave a comment if you read this and if you are learning Afrikaans – I would love to hear from you!