The Only Resolution I’ve Ever Fully Kept
Here we are, almost a full month into the new year! Have you made some resolutions? Did you spend some time formulating the goals you want to reach in the coming months? Me, too. However, while most of the bullet-pointed items never come to fruition, one thing I resolved has really stuck. Here’s the story behind the only resolution I’ve ever fully kept.
Water Hoses and Western Wear
When I began dating a boy in high school whose dad farmed a little, I bought a pair of western boots and a leather belt etched with my name in big, capital letters – B R E N D A.
It was important that I look cute when I went with him to “change the water” on a few early Saturday mornings. While orange and yellow rays of color splashed across the sky, sun rising in the distance, we went row after row, each bending, reaching and turning the directions of the pipes.
I tried, but I never could quite grasp the physics behind that process. How could water travel from down in the valley of a crop row up into the curving of a tube and back down into a neighboring, identical trench? If you ask me, whoever figured out how to do that was one smart feller.
But I didn’t spend that much time thinking about it. I was a teenager with long blonde hair blowing in the breeze and a cute boyfriend who knew how to do stuff. The physics behind the watering of crops was a subject to be studied way down the road.
Speaking of the road, it was I who had driven us that morning down the dirt road in my mom’s green Dodge Dart (he didn’t have his license yet). After we had finished the farming for the morning and I was back behind the wheel, I daydreamed of us getting married in boots and jeans, honeymooning on a trail ride, and then “changing water” for the rest of our lives, with our 4.5 well-behaved children gleefully giggling and tromping around in the mud while wearing tall green galoshes.
That didn’t happen – and I’m ever so glad, but I will say that traipsing around in my boots on those cool summer mornings did make me think a little deeper about the power of a consistent trickle of water.
Photo taken while hiking the Barton Creek Greenbelt in Austin
Garden Plot and Grand Ideas
Fast forward to 2006 when Mike and I (the real man of my dreams) moved to a house on two acres in a rural school district outside Amarillo.
That sweet man who married me built the biggest, most well-designed garden plot out of railroad ties, and we planted all manner of vegetables and herbs. Oh, my. It was very, very, very exciting.
And then the drought hit.
People stopped watering their yards. The wind was fiercer than ever, stealing away the water than tried to go into the garden’s ground.
Soon, conserving water was on the minds of everyone – and wasting water was on the minds of no one.
Photo taken on a Saturday morning walk across a bridge over Lady Bird Lake in Austin
A Serious Resolution
It was then that I determined upon a decision that became the only resolution I’ve ever fully kept.
“I, Brenda McDearmon, hereby resolve… forever and always… no matter what… no matter where…
That I will always drink all my restaurant water.
Photo taken at Krause Springs, near Austin, when we were enjoying a late fall picnic.
Plenty of Motivation
Sometimes when I’m chitty-chatting too much to make a motion of restraint as the waitstaff dutifully refills my glass for the third time, I think I might could just leave this one un-drunk.
But then I remember stepping across wide, dry earthen cracks in the space between our house and our neighbors’.
Other times, it’s chilly outside and I really don’t want to drink the cold water already poured. I’d rather be sipping hot coffee.
But then I remember that the drought went on for a long time, and people thought Lake Travis would never be full again in their lifetime – if ever.
Sometimes everyone at the table is waiting on me to finish my ice cold water, and I can’t drink it that fast. It would be much more convenient to just get up and go.
But then I remember that I really don’t think I can do that anymore.
I’ve been drinking all my restaurant water for several years now, and I just don’t think I can take a single drop of it for granted like I used to.
Photo taken on a sunset cruise with friends around beautiful Lake Travis in Austin
Will You Join?
What if we all made this same resolution? Just think of the massive amount of water that would go un-wasted.
We’re all trying to drink enough water anyway. How about if we make a commitment to drink all of the water that is poured into our glass at every restaurant we patronize – all year long. And then how many gallons of wasted water could we save if we resolved to continue the habit for the rest of our days? Further than that, can we even comprehend the circumference of the ripple effect this decision would have if we were to teach our kids and grandkids to do the same?
Let’s do it. We who are Texas Over Fifty can easily take this one on together, y’all. One individual decision will drop an incredible boost upon our collective impact.
Will you join me? Good!
Let’s drink all our restaurant water, my friends.
Photo taken while watching the fireworks on New Year’s Eve over Lady Bird Lake in Austin
One More Resolution
Once I started a new pattern of drinking all my restaurant water, it got easier and easier to do. Sure, I wish I would have stuck with all my New Year’s resolutions through the years like I have this one. I mean, really. Seriously. Wouldn’t that have been the bomb?
But at least I’ve kept this one.
However, there is one more resolution I don’t think I’ll have an ounce of trouble keeping.
I, Brenda McDearmon, hereby resolve… forever and always… no matter what… no matter where…
That I will never again wear a western (or any other type) belt with my name etched across my hind parts in big, capital letters.
Encouraging a life filled with everyday intentional adventure, and an empty water glass at your seat and mine,
PS: Here are a few other posts you might enjoy.