Right around 18 months, Curtis lost complete interest in Swedish. I vividly remember an afternoon on the playground in Mar Vista, trying to ask him if he wanted to get in his toy push-car so we could head home. He refused to answer until I rephrased my question in English.
Axel is completely different. He not only embraces my native language -- he excels at it. At two-and-a-half, he doesn't quite grasp that Pappa doesn't really understand his foreign-sounding questions and demands, but I'm guessing that will come soon. He loves his Swedish books, understands everything I say, evidenced by the recent impressive mastery of the word 'wheelbarrow' which came up, unprovoked, during a bed-time story.
I'm so committed to continue encouraging his command of Swedish. And I can't wait until next summer when all the cousins, sisters, brother-in-laws, and grandparents will gather in Ljunghusen for a couple of weeks, and the smattering of languages -- and surely, communication snafus -- that will ensue.
Ironic, in a way, that my little guy got the Scandinavian name, and true to his roots, speaks the language.
Curtis on the other hand. He'll always be my little American.