I spoke a couple conversationally and spent long periods immersed in those foreign language environments and could pick them back up relatively easily if immersed again. I never got to the point where I thought or dreamed wholly in another language. One of the languages I know is sign language, and I did have dreams where people were signing, but it wasn’t a ‘dream in sign language’ if you know what I mean.
With Spanish, to use an example, I did get to the point where hearing it was the exact same as hearing something in English. The concepts just immediately translated without filtering them through active translationary thought. It was cool and still happens after about a week in a Spanish speaking country. I love Spanish more than any other language. It is the perfect romance language, bar none.
With American Sign Language, it is much harder to explain, because the language is simply so much different in terms of processing, I think. After lots and lots of total immersion in the Deaf community, I got to the point where I could understand sign without looking at peoples hands. I could look at their eyes and facial expressions, totally ignoring their hands, and still somehow understand what they were saying. I can’t, for the life of me, explain it. It is like I just somehow took the totality of their signs, expressions, and movement and fused them unconsciously. It represented a real moment of freedom and progress in my ASL journey where I could communicate on a much deeper and more emotional level.
French is super hard for me. I can’t understand what the fuck they are saying. They need to get rid of liaisons and actually annunciate their words. It’s gibberish to me. Italian is just an inferior version of Spanish (Italians would kill me over this). And Esperanto is really cool.