One in a Million

Hey!  It’s my birthday!  I have kicked the butt of 38 years of life.  And today, Life must bow its head in acknowledgement.  (Thanks, Life.  You’re a good egg.)

For my birthday, I want world peace.

Anybody out there hoarding all the world peace?  ‘Cause I’m a mom, so I can buh-ring it if you need a little chat about sharing.

No?  No takers?


OK, Wish #2 it is.

For my birthday, I want to help save and improve the lives of one million children and their mamas.

Don’t worry, though.  I have a PLAN!  And this isn’t like that one time when I had a plan to have two… MAYbe three… children.  No.  This plan is gonna WORK!

It was yesterday morning’s eyelid zit that got me thinking.  I stood there staring in the bathroom mirror.  The unmistakable red swelling insistently peeking out from beneath the mountain of eyeshadow I shoveled upon it.

I had two essential questions:

  1. Who even gets eyelid zits?  Seriously.  This probably happens to one in a million people! And it better not happen to me anymore now that I’m 38.  Thirty-eight is WAY too old for eyelid zits.  Google said so.  (P.S. Google didn’t say so.  But now that I’ve made the scientific link between 38 and eyelid zits, Google will, too.  Google’s basically just a gigantic copycat.)
  2. Do eyelids have pores?

And that’s when I realized that my zit is probably not a clogged pore.  Nope.  I just plucked my eyebrows the other night.  And, um, in the process I might’ve had to pluck the occasional eyelid hair.

The occasional, exactly-in-the-middle-of-my-eyelid hair.

So smack dab in the middle of my eyelid, in fact, that I wonder whether a stray eyebrow traveled south or a renegade eyelash traveled north.

Which makes me think I should put my eyebrows and eyelashes in charge of world peace.  ‘Cause you know what they can do that we apparently can’t?  Meet in the middle.

Yeah.  That would make my zit a clogged hair follicle.  ‘Cause it wasn’t gross enough already to have the hair there in the first place.  I had to clog it up.

So here I am on my birthday with an eyelid zit.  It didn’t go away just ’cause I turned 38.  (I know.  Rude.)

It’s been a strange and lovely week.  I’ve brought the strange, and y’all have brought the lovely.  (Hmmm; it occurs to me that I could’ve written that last sentence about church potlucks.  But moving on…)

And, even in the midst of bone-deep gratitude to all of you, my insanely loyal readers, I find myself, well, rather tired of hearing about me.  Me-blah-di-me-blah-di-me.

So I found myself dreading my birthday. 

Really? Me said to Me.  I’m gonna follow a week of plugging myself in a blog contest with, you know, a day that’s ALL ABOUT ME?


And then I thought, And I have to do it with an eyelid zit?

Which was ironic because it was… yep, another thought about ME.

Which was ironic AGAIN (irony stacked upon irony, guys!)… because it made me realize that I have to change that.

Right the heck now.

I work at Medical Teams International.  I’m not getting paid, pressured or pampered to write this.  They probably would rather I stop, what with all the writing about super uncomfortable topics.  But – have I mentioned? – IT’S MY BIRTHDAY! – and everyone knows you can’t fire a girl on her birthday.

At Medical Teams International, we do the optimistic work of sending medical teams to respond to the areas of the world affected by disaster, conflict and poverty.

I know.  “Optimistic” is an odd choice of word when I’m talking about mamas who, for their birthdays, just want to be able to feed their kids, or get them medical treatment, or, you know, see them live.

But it is optimistic, and here’s why.


  1. Together, we CAN make a difference.
  2. The problem is NOT too big.
  3. God’s on our team.  I know because I checked.  God said yes.

The answer comes in building a movement.  And YOU are part of the movement.

Don’t laugh.  It’s your fault.  ‘Cause you got me to thinking… if we can together do the kind of rallying that takes this tiny blog from 111th place to 3rd place in the Parents Funniest Mom Bog 2011 contest in just one week, think of what we can do, together, if we rally our efforts for mamas who desperately need help to provide care for their babies.

Occasionally between now and the end of December, I’m going to talk about Medical Teams International’s One in Million Campaign, which is helping to save and change the lives of one million kids and their mamas in 16 countries.

Just when you’re expecting a blindingly brilliant post on wiping preschool hineys, I’m gonna spring it on you!

I’m going to do my part for the movement, and we’re going to discuss specifics.  Ways we can maximize donations as small as $2.30.  And ways we can do stuff for free.  Ways we can spread the word.  And ways we can build the movement.

‘Cause I’ll tell you what.  Holding hands from across the ocean with a mama who just got to see her baby live?… well, that is WAY better than staring at my eyelid in the mirror.

Join me!

One in a million.  One at a time.


If you just can’t wait to read more and get started, well, then you have my heart already.  You can read all about the One in a Million campaign here.

If you need a good cry, my friend Marlene wrote a stunning blog post titled “I Wish I Were Fat Like You.”  If you don’t need a good cry, stay very, very far away.

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14 responses to “One in a Million”

  1. Happy Belated Birthday! (Sorry, I’ve been unpacking and am a bit behind in cyberspace.) I didn’t realize you worked at Medical Teams International – they are so great! Did Kristen tell you my dad (her father-in-law) has gone to El Salvador and Armenia with them? Anyhoo… we’ll make sure to include them in our end of year donations. All the stories in their mailings make me tear up…

    • Thanks! It was a great birthday! So glad you intimately know Medical Teams’ work and have had a chance to experience it through your dad’s work, too. I’m always thrilled to have a friend on the Saving Lives road!

  2. Okay seriously? That has to be the MOST random segue I think I’ve ever read! 😛
    Happy Birthday, can’t wait to hear more about Medical Teams!

  3. Hi Beth!

    I just found your blog and I have a few things I just have to say.

    #1 – Happy Birthday! Party like it’s 1999… or something like that.
    #2 – Where, oh where have you been in my blogging life? I realize there’s a lot of bloggers out there but how come we haven’t met until now?
    #3 – I haven’t had an eyelid zit but I’ve had them in other odd places… like my ear, my lip-line and my butt (yikes, did I actually just share that)?
    #4 – I look forward to reading more!

    Happy Birthday once again. Hopefully you’ll update us with your post-celebratory stories.

    • Hi, Jennifer! So glad to have you on board our crazy train! I look forward to takin’ a gander at your blog, too.

      Thanks for the birthday wishes.

      And, regarding the butt zit: a) your secret is safe with me, b) I might or might not know exactly what you mean, c) I highly recommend never, ever having certain parts of your body waxed, ’cause, um, you might end up with zits there, too, d) we shall be great friends (I can tell by the words “butt zit”). 😉

      • seriously? you’re not going to elaborate on which parts one should not have waxed? so how will we know? HOW? 😉

        ps: in case you’re already preparing a post on the above: sorry, I’ll try to be more patient next time…

  4. Just so you know, I really DON’T need a good cry, but how can I resist that link? You don’t know me too well yet do you? I HAVE to know everything….

    Great goal for your birthday. I had an impossible wish for my birthday a couple years ago–but it came true, even though it was more selfish. Your goal resonates with me too.

    I hope your birthday is much more blessed than you expect.

  5. Happy Birthday Beth! You have the ability to touch our hearts in ways that are incredible – I know your birthday wish will become a reality! He is on your side! 🙂