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hold one's breath

  1. Used other than with a figurative or idiomatic meaning: see hold,‎ one's,‎ breath. To keep air in one's lungs, pausing noticeably before exhaling after previously inhaling.
  2. (idiomatic, usually in a negative) To wait expectantly for something to happen soon.
    He might pay back the money he borrowed without you reminding him, but I wouldn't hold my breath.
    • 2008, Linda Robinson, Tell Me How This Ends: General David Petraeus and the Search for a Way Out of Iraq, page 271:
      Petraeus hoped they would succeed, and lent his support, but he was not holding his breath.

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