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  • Jan Thoreen Lewis

Saying Yes!

Updated: Mar 1, 2019

Over 20 years ago we met a family who was able to call out the hidden adventurer in each of us.  Little did we know that our lives would never be the same. Together, members of our families survived icy mountain trails, desert camping and adventures, rock climbing, lake ice hockey and adventure skates, summer skinny-dipping in Twin Lakes, hair-raising mountain bike rides, class 5 river rafting, kayaking, telemark skiing and survival lessons.  

Negro Bill Canyon – Moab, SOLD to private collection

As you can imagine, there are numerous stories behind all of these experiences, but the biggest story is of personal transformation in each one of us.  This remarkable family became part of our family, and wrote indelibly on the pages of who we each have become.  And the writing goes on today. What I learned is this: say YES! That’s it. No hesitation when adventure calls.

What I learned is this:  Say YES! That’s it.  No hesitation when adventure calls.

BB (Before Bangerts), I would hem and haw and try to determine whether I would be happy to have made any given decision when I was on the other end of it.  What would it require? Was is scary? Did I want to be uncomfortable? Did my sleeping bag have a hole? Would I get enough sleep? Would I have to go a week without a shower or makeup?  

AB (After Bangerts) entered our lives, (a wonderful God-given story of its own), I somehow found myself saying YES!, even when I had no idea of the outcome.  There was just too much fun on the horizon that I didn’t want to miss out on.

Looking back, I can see that it might have been wise to at least admit to myself that I was approaching 50 when our shared lives began, and some adventures might be risky to these no-longer-youthful bones.  And though there have been prices to pay from my sometimes-reckless abandon, I’ll never regret learning to live with it!

So, along with a bit of the lessons learned from life with these dear friends, I’m sharing with you a couple of paintings that came of these adventures.  I hope you enjoy them!

And this brings me to the choice I made back then: When those that I say I trust invite me into the Unknown, show them that I mean it by saying YES! 

Moab Petroglyphs, Watercolor, SOLD to private collection
When those that I say I trust invite me into the Unknown, show them that I mean it by saying YES!

Don’t hem and haw, bite my nails, wait for a “better time,” or consider all the possible outcomes.  Just say YES! This honors them, stretches me, and expands the world I live in. Whether in a wilderness romp, attending a seminar or workshop that I may never have heard of and is really out of my comfort zone, reading a book I may not have chosen for myself, or traveling to a country where I don’t even know how to ask where the bathroom is, I say YES!  There may be a few little messes to clean up along the way, but it’s well worth it for all that it adds to my life.

So, tell me when you said that fateful word and it changed your life – I’d love to hear about it!  Yes? YES!

Twin Lakes Summer Afternoon, Oil on canvas, 24”x36” unframed, $1200
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