First Contact

by Laura

Hello Laura, our names are Mike Rogalewski and Cathy McConnachie and we are the brother and sister you have been searching for. We can imagine you have so many things to ask, as we do as well. All we ask is you be patient with us, as you have had a bit more time to process this situation and deal with emotions, we only realized the truth in this two days ago….my email address is _____________ and Cathy’s email is _______________ ….I have also included a friend request here on Facebook. We look forward to hearing from you and of course, meeting you and your family in the near future…until then, in the spirit of love, Mike and Cathy

I first heard from Mike and Cathy, my Brother and Sister (through our Mom, Charlotte McManus) on 16 February 2016.  It had been a nerve-wracking couple of days between when I had first contacted Colin McManus, our mutual cousin, who contacted another cousin, Shelley, who then contacted Mike’s wife Sharon.

And the green grass grows all around, all around… 😀

But that’s Mike’s story…and I know he’ll be sharing it at some point. I only know of it through him, and at later date.

So, here we are, making our first contact with each other; me, after months and months of research. Mike and Cathy, out of what, to them, must have been a clear blue sky.

Hi Mike! Hi Cathy! It’s wonderful hearing from you! Believe me, I am stunned over the idea of a Brother and a Sister. I’ve always known that there was some family “out there”, somewhere…but I never thought this would really happen. One of the overarching desires I have had through this process, is that I want to be careful and sensitive to all of you. What we may have known in theory has become real and that can be hard. Take all the time you need. My email is ________ My phone is 555 555  5555 Feel free to connect whenever and however you like. No question is too hard; I am happy to answer what I can with what I know. My husband David and I would like to come up to Buffalo for some of the St Patrick’s Day stuff. I hope we can meet each other then, if not before (we aren’t that far away…) but I want to move at a pace that is good for all of us. Just let me know. Again, thank you for this. I cannot tell you how much this means. Laura.

The planning for our “re-union” began. To say we had a LOT of catching up to do is an understatement. Mike and I are “Irish Twins”:  siblings born less than a year apart; in our case, 360 days, exactly. So we had about 60 years to catch up on. Cathy and I, a bit less. They verified for me, in the continuation of this conversation, that our younger brother, John, whom I had felt as if there was something amiss, had died in February, 2015. I was saddened by this; sorry we would not meet. I had already lost so much family I DID know. Somehow, it’s harder to lose family I DIDN’T know, but, yet, were a part of me and mine.

What more would I learn? when would we actually meet? I was working overtime to be patient. My Buffalo Family needed time to process. But, first…they had to tell their kids. And that wasn’t happening until the next weekend…

And I, of course, needed to talk to mine.

Oh boy.