Can we expect to speak a foreign language like a native, if we start learning as an adult?
I know people whose ability to express themselves in a foreign language exceeds that of many native speakers.
There are famous authors who write in a language that is not their own, with elegance and accuracy, using a range of vocabulary that most native speakers can’t match.
There are other people who are so good at pronouncing a foreign language that they can almost be mistaken for a native, but not quite.
Such people, however, are rare.
Speaking like a native, being mistaken for a native, is essentially not a practical goal.
We can still use the native speaker as a model, as we use sports stars, even though we know we will not be able to fully imitate them.
We should just strive to constantly improve, and to enjoy communicating and connecting with a new language and culture.
Whenever we succeed in communicating, that is speaking, writing, listening or reading, we should congratulate ourselves.