The Pregnant Pause

by Laura

Have you ever heard of the term “pregnant pause”? Wiktionary defines it as:

  1. pause that gives the impression that it will be followed by something significant.

Indeed. I was to become very familiar with the pregnant pause in the next day or two. So, Colin rang me up and in a few short sentences, accompanied by me being very nervous, very anxious…as in anxiety anxious; yet ready with an answer for pretty much any question he had for me; ready to “prove my case”, as it were…I simply explained where I lay in the McManus Family Tree (deep breath):

“I’m Charlotte’s daughter. She released me for adoption back in 1955.”

Pregnant Pause.

Oh shit moment.

As that bit of life-changing, family-altering information set in, I listened to our Grandfather clock tick-tock in the background.  Loudly.  Colin is my cousin. My 2nd cousin, actually; his Grandfather being my Grandfather’s younger brother.

I could hear him breath.

Colin asked a few questions, then asked if he could share this info with Shelley, another cousin we have. She was good friends with my brother and his wife and my sister. He promised she would be discrete; that she was “trustworthy” and would be most helpful. At this point, we had progressed to, “How do I approach my siblings?” to “how do we introduce me and mine and figure out some sort of reunion? Would they be open to that? How do we go about doing that?” Then Colin made this all worthwhile…the hours of research, the achey neck bent over my computer screen, the tired eyes strained over crabbed Latin writing, the frustration, the reversals, the deleting and starting all over again…as he was the first person to welcome me; to be excited about me (in his very low-key way 😉 ) and to assure me, it would work out and he’d be in touch.

And the tears began to flow. I had done it. I found my family.

Then, on Valentine’s Day (2016), Colin and I are messaging like crazy. I’m getting friend requests from Shelley on FB and answering HER questions, sending her documentation through email, and, suddenly…it’s all moving very, very quickly. Colin came through with lots of family story for me, so I’m filling in the “-“. Shelley now has become the person who “introduces” me to Mike, Sharon, and Cathy.

Pregnant Pause.

Oh shit moment.

And, again, I am waiting for the phone to ring? an email? a Facebook message?

I’m just waiting. More. Still. That’s when I fill up my time, distracting myself by working on my paternal tree. And I find my Dad. It’s too much.

Now there are Pregnant Pauses and Oh shit moments all over the place. Shelley is great at keeping me in the loop, lest I go absolutely crazy, when I get my first communication from…Mike and Cathy.

Pregnant Pause. Oh shit moment…