PAYOFFS THAT MATTER

Normal is not coming back! WHATTTTT????????

Welcome to 2022! We cannot go back to what is “normal”. It does not exist. Normal is different for each one of us. And — LIKE IT OR NOT – most of us are victims. I don’t need you to agree. BUT – Although all of us have been wounded and without choice in what happens to us, we can select now how we will Respond.

This is what I believe – I have been a victim all my life. I have sacrificed myself time after time to get what I want. You name it. I chose to be the victim. And now I am not. I am loving myself more. It is as simple as that. If not now, when???

Bottom line – we are all victims of victims, and our parents could not possibly have taught us anything that they did not know. If your mother did not know how to love herself, or your father did not know how to love himself, then it would be impossible for them to teach you to love yourself. Victims with secrets and hidden agendas.

They were doing the best they could with what they had been taught as children. If I did not know how to love myself, I could not possibly teach my kids to love themselves.  Instead, I chose to sacrifice myself throughout my life “.  I had made my bed, and now I must lie in it.” 

So, my kids did not and do not know how to love themselves. How can they teach their children ? They are finding answers on their own as they sift through the confusion. doing the best that they can with what I taught them – that discipline and hard work make the day. Lots of criticism. Rough seas make good sailors. They don’t care where my rigid patterns come from. They just don’t want to be like me – frightened and scared like a cat chasing its tail. I am now suffering the consequences of that life of discipline, self -control, and hard knocks that I was taught by my parents.

Who or what have I “resented”?  Who or what have I criticized?  About what do I feel guilty? What am I afraid of?  Am I making myself sick?  Can I heal? I need to change my way of thinking. WHAT??????? Hang in there and just listen to these ideas that I am tossing out there to my JAYSPEAK readers.

Meet my sister Barbara.  Every January 14th, I know that it is my sister Barbara’s birthday. I celebrate this date every year. To know Barbara was to love her. She was witty, intelligent, an accomplished pianist, beautiful, and a lover of all peoples and their cultures – popular and adored by all who knew her. (Plus, she had long eyelashes, naturally-curly hair, and a figure to die for.) She was not only my older sister but also my hero. When Mother or Patricia would get mad at me, Barbara was always there to take my side (even if undeserved – because I liked “making waves”).  In her late teens, when we were vacationing in Daytona Beach, her appendix ruptured. We did not think she would survive. She did, but after that, she developed rheumatoid arthritis and struggled with her health from then on. At the time, she was attending Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. She had to move to Tucson, Arizona, where she lived for the rest of her life, eventually graduating and getting her Masters Degree at the University of Arizona. She died in 2000. Her memory lives on. Lots more to her story, but this is enough for now. I will always love you, Barbara. Happy Birthday. She died February 9, 2000.  She was my sister, my friend, my confident, and my inspiration.  I miss her very much.  But, I did not really KNOW her. I did not listen to her. I thought I knew. I am posting pictures today in her honor.

This is her daughter – the miracle baby – Anna Beth.  Janet and Anna Beth!  Never a dull moment when Anna Beth was around.  She inherited her mother’s wit!  Lots of good times and good memories!!

The Junior League (Barbara was a member) had a member who was interviewing Barbara.  Barbara was still alive at the time.  She said that interviewing someone she had have admired for many years is not an easy task.  Barbara Jewell Asmussen is an inspiration to all who know her. Born in Gainesville, Georgia, she studied history at Vanderbilt University for three years.  Then, crippled by rheumatoid arthritis, she became bedridden and was taken out of school.

Barbara came to Tucson primarily for medical reasons and soon was well enough to attend the University of Arizona where  she received her bachelor’s degree in 1954.  She was introduced by a mutual friend to young Richard Asmussen, a Hughes Aircraft employee and graduate student in the U of À’s MBA program.  Following their wedding, Barbara decided to return to school for her teacher’s certificate. She taught fourth grade for a year at Government Heights Elementary High School’s Mardi Gras School.  But she found the regime too strenuous and switched her energy to volunteer work. In 1960, she became a League provisional and the very next year had a daughter – Anna Beth. This was a miracle pregnancy and miracle birth.

After a severe health setback, Barbara became more involved in the League where she served as vice president.  She was active with Planned Parenthood and served as its president, as well as serving as the president of the YWCA residential intervention center. 

Uppermost in her mind was helping others, SO Barbara returned to the Universitv for the third time to take her master’s in rehabilitation counseling. She did her internship at St. Mary’s Hospital and continued to work there tor ten vears. But last year, she was moved to St. Joseph’ Hospital temporarily but found that being next door to her home was most convenient and has since made St. loe’s her permanent office.

This lady always seems to look beyond herself and has worked diligently for the handicapped, although she does not seem to fit into that category. Barbara’s philosophy of life is that wholeness is within.  Although all of us have been wounded and without choice in what happens to us, we can now select how we will Respond. 

Barbara was convinced that we had been emotionally abused as children. We were. Long story that I don’t want to share. Besides, they are all gone now and I have my memories and realize I had so much good happen along with the pain. I love my family. I love me, Janet. Outstanding little girl.

Did I need to show off in order to be accepted? Yes. That was the only time I got my family’s attention.

This is not to say that I did not love my family. I did. But I am wanting to feel whole and complete just as I am – with all of my imperfections.

Just something to think about during this pandemic. Welcome to 2022! Be happy. Be present. Get with the program. If not now, when.?

Best, Jay

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.

3 thoughts on “PAYOFFS THAT MATTER

  1. Thank you very much, I needed to know that. I cannot find any answers because I am in uncharted waters. And your comment is important to me.

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  2. Janet, Oh, if you could see how others see you! The most determined, self confident person I ever met. You have to love yourself to have lived the way you have lived. Your goal setting has always amazed me and attaining those goals was accomplished by a confident self loving person! Now you can’t reach that goal you and Steve went to France to do. Loosing him has changed your life. It is only right that you are upset— now you are the victim with his untimely and unexpected death. All this piled onto the difficulties you have with your knee add to your feelings of despair. Yes, I would be terrified knowing I was living like you are having to live – and the content anxiety about finances and most of all- alone and this damned pandemic.

    This is Kay’s version of Dr. Freud talking! Unlike Freud I don’t know a way out but just know that all of us are scared now – Gates’ continuing decline and just old age in general. Maybe something I wrote will be helpful. I’ll send it real quick in case i decide against it! >

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