LIMITATIONS

61 years ago, February 23, 1958, my beautiful daughter, Tracy Lee MacIntyre, was born in Baptist Memorial Hospital in San Antonio, Texas, at 4:11 p.m.  The doctor was Dr, Alfred Celaya and the nurse was Mrs. Nimitz.  Darrell was a Second Lieutenant in the Army, stationed at Fort Sam Houston for a two-year requirement in R.O.T.C. before going back to Law School.  We were living at 247 Emporia Boulevard, Apt. 7, San Antonio, TX.  She weighed 7 lbs, 4 1/2 oz. and was 18″ long.  I was in Room 301.  

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I was planning to write more about her because I love/loved her very much and thought we would be friends forever.  It is difficult to do. She went on to graduate from UCLA with a degree in classical guitar, and graduate with her masters degree and PhD from Pepperdine in child psychology. 

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She has lived most of her life in Colorado Springs, CO.  But, I don’t know much else about her. We have lived a lifetime apart.  Somewhere along the way, something went very wrong.  A lot of accusations were made.  I will never know whether they are/were true or not.  I had difficulty accepting them at the time.  These days, I think they were/are true.  But, you think you know someone, and you don’t.  I have not seen her since 1999 – 20 years ago.  I was so happy that we were getting along.  

IMG_1684-1Not a day goes by that I don’t think of her, want to see her, wonder who she is, and what she is like.  But, we never could get along as adults.  Both of us are culpable.  Long story that will probably remain unwritten.  But, on this, her 61st birthday, I wish her well and hope she is surrounded by good friends who love her and lots of loving dogs and beautiful cats.  This morning, I walked to Notre Dame and lit two candles for us, thinking about limitations. At 81, going on 82, and a limited budget, I am now subject to limitations that I didn’t have before.  Is that an excuse?  I am not sure. We both have suffered heartache. I am not sure that I can repair anything at this late date.  I don’t think I can repair much of anything.

Are “limitations” merely an excuse/  Limitations……….

Have you even thought about the fact that we are always dealing with limits of one sort or another – they never seem to stop.  This morning, I was thinking that I am stopped from doing some things I want to do because of my age.  Not that I cannot do them, or cannot afford them, or do not want them, but solely because of my age – 81, going on 82.  I am supposed to be “old” – no matter whether I feel or look old, or not.  Ugh.  I HATE that !  Now, granted there are some things that I CANNOT do, but I am not talking about those things.  

At the other end of the spectrum, I had to wait – until I was 13, until I was 16, until I was 18, until I was 21, THEN LIFE HAPPENED until I was 65, then it became “before” – before 60, before 65, before 75, before 80, before death.  Ugh.  I HATE that ! Now, a lot of this is country-specific.  In France, I cannot get a mortgage after 75.  Not true in the U.S.  A lot of French people won’t rent to me because I am going to rent their apartment and DIE there.  NO, I AM NOT!!!!!   Or that I am from the U.S. and will not pay my rent because I am retired with income in the U.S., not France. Ugh.  YES, I WILL!!! 

As an actress, I knew to learn the limits (the rules) before I did anything. Most of them were unwritten.  As an attorney, I had to deal with limits and laws, starting in Law School and going from there.  Most of those were written.  With both sets of rules, I learned the ones I could break and those that I could not break.  Same with dating, marriage, and having children.  “Having and keeping friends” has its own set of rules, most people setting what they – knowingly or unknowingly – call “boundaries”.  

In France, I am really confused.  Everything is different.  People are here from all over the world and each one of them with his/her own set of boundaries.  Nothing is what it seems or even familiar.  So, I am constantly groping around in the dark, feeling the walls for a light switch.  

Maybe some of you can identify with some of this. A lot reminiscing and rambling and regretting, and …….  on it goes.  As the French would say, C’est La Vie!  As the Americans would say, “Get a life!”  

Best, Jay

 

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Published by jjaywmac

Jay W. MacIntosh (born Janet Tallulah Jewell) is a retired attorney, actress, and writer from the United States, living in Paris, France. She is a member of the California Bar and selected to the 2018, 2019, 2020 Southern California Super Lawyers list. She holds a Master’s Degree in Drama from the University of Georgia and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Kappa Phi, and Zodiac Scholastic Society. As an actress, she is a member of The Actors Studio, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (ATAS), SAG-AFTRA, and ASCAP, performing in film and television in the United States and France. Her published works include Journal of Janet Tallulah, Volume 1, Journal of Janet Tallulah, Volume 2, The Origins of George Bernard Shaw’s Life Force Philosophy, Moments in Time, Capturing Beauty, JAYSPEAK on the Côte d’Azur, and Janet Tallulah.

2 thoughts on “LIMITATIONS

  1. I think of Tracy often. Sometimes when I look at Katie, I see the resemblance between her and Tracy, that same smile. There’s so much I could say, too, in the way of remembrances and regrets and wishing estranged family members hadn’t become estranged. But as you said, “C’est la vie!”

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  2. I think there are more parents in this situation than you know – so many folks have told me that they are estranged from their son or daughter. Something I would never “post” publically, but I had a huge problem with my son’s wife – actually, her with me, apparently. She treated me like garbage, wouldn’t allow visits, wouldn’t allow my son to visit. I got so much unsolicited advice – all of which was, basically, go after them with everything in your arsenal.

    I decided against it. I just took the proverbial “step back” and waited and just let them “be.” I was something I never am: gracious. [after all, I’m an attorney and absolutely enjoy confrontation, but not this time]

    it took awhile, but they are back – and I’m treated much more civilly by her, as for my son, he’s really come back to the fold – just like his old self.

    so my advice to you is to take no one’s advice. do what you feel is the right thing to do. there really is no answer to this. you seem to be having a pleasant life – how could you not? south of France. I loved it there when I spent summers on Hyérès. I’d move back in a heartbeat – but, well, I’ve got this mutt…..

    anyway, that’s a story for a different time.  may require booz. just continue to enjoy your very youthful self.

    hope I haven’t bored you too much, sheree

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