February 8th, 2021
Dear Dr. Miller and the Covid-19 Makeover Team, I have tried several times to put into words my gratitude for being the recipient of the Covid-19 makeover, yet whatever I wrote, it seemed to fall short of capturing the depth of my appreciation. Like most things in life, I need to let go of doing it perfectly, and just do it. So here goes… First, I have been blown away by the genuine kindness and authenticity of each person involved in this process. Significantly, the individuals on the makeover team are also small business owners who have been negatively impacted by the pandemic. Yet, in spite of their hardships, they are joyfully giving to someone else. I have been so inspired by the goodness of your team. They are amazing women! They are a powerhouse of positive energy and kindness and I am profoundly grateful!
I am 51 years old. I never dreamt that I would receive a gift of this magnitude. Initially, I joked with my friends that I wanted the Covid mask requirement to end before my fillers wore off! :) Self-deprecating humor has always been one of my strengths! Fortunately, like most things in life, there is a silver lining; and for me, the mask requirement happened perfectly—it brought forth an awareness that would not have happened otherwise. It doesn’t matter how other people see me; it only matters how I see myself. Several weeks ago, as the makeover process was well underway, I was washing my face in the morning and caught a glimpse of myself in the bathroom mirror. As I splashed the water from my eyes, I was astounded to see a “40 year old Laura” looking back at me. The experience of seeing myself 10 plus years ago was profound; it was akin to seeing a long lost friend that I was certain I’d never see again.
And then something remarkable happened; I began to remember the hopes and dreams that I had had at age 40. I remembered the book that I had intended to finish writing and the workshop series that I had wanted to promote. I recalled the passion that I had had about empowering young women, and my commitment to teaching skills that would protect them from violence. I remembered the feeling of once knowing that I was living my life’s purpose, and the sense of peace and natural optimism that I experienced from living with intention. I remembered being in my thirties and having someone stop me in Schnucks to thank me “for giving a workshop that changed her life!” And I remembered that it was once impossible to feel negatively about myself because I was using my gifts to make a difference in the world. I believe that when we stop using our gifts, low grade depression can envelope us. This depression is sometimes worse than a major breakdown because it is insidious and sly— it sneaks up on us, slowly chipping away at our spirit. For me, low grade depression looked like a second glass of wine, wearing pajamas till noon, falling asleep with my clothes on, skipping a mammogram two years in a row, dropping the F Bomb when arguing with my 15 year old son, and having increased pessimism towards the world.
How did this happen to me? As a young woman, when I imagined myself growing old, I was confident that my inner beauty would more than compensate for any physical decline. And for the first two decades of adulthood, the trajectory of my life supported this “aging gracefully” philosophy. In my twenties, I earned a Doctorate in Psychology, and in my thirties, I became a Professional Life Coach. I was living my passion! Peak experiences included giving personal growth workshops; I was really good at it! I started writing a book and had a website that I was really proud of. Then, due to a serious of unanticipated events, including losing a job and the real estate crash, I was needed to assist on my husband’s food truck. We thought it would be temporary, but one year turned to two years and then three years turned to four. Each day I asked customers if they wanted “an extra side of tzatziki or today’s special?” I longed for connection and I longed to make a difference. When customers would take even a few minutes to share a small part of their lives with me, I was so happy! I’ve always loved people.
Unbeknownst to me, in a span of ten years, I sank into a very subtle but low grade depression. I deactivated my website and placed the unfinished book in a storage bin. And perhaps most insidiously, I began to think “false beliefs” about myself including, “I am too old” and “it is too late.” Moreover, when I looked in the mirror, I saw a tired and uninspired image which reinforced my false beliefs. I even stopped dreaming.
And then I received a phone call that I was the winner of the Covid-19 makeover. While I am thrilled with the physical results, my greatest surprise and joy has been the internal change. The gift of this makeover has brought me back to SELF—the truth of who I am. I called my website creator and pulled the dusty storage bins off of the shelves. It’s only the beginning, but I am slowly dismantling the blocks that have kept me stuck for too long. Thank you to Dr. Miller, Gwen, Lora, and the St. Louis Skin Solutions Team. Your genuine enthusiasm and kindness was amazing. Dr. Miller, I am so appreciative of your talent, attention to detail, and exceptional skill! And thank you to Amy Bartnett at Trim Hair Salon for the incredible cut, color, and products; your energy is uplifting and I left your salon feeling absolutely loved! Also, thank you to Rachel at Leopard Boutique for the beautiful clothes — your story and intention is inspiring; and thank you to Joy Loveless for the professional makeup application which made me feel like I was thirty again. And lastly, thank you to my sister, Elizabeth Henderson, for nominating me; I am so lucky to have you in my life!
With profound gratitude and appreciation,
“Lora was great!”
“I highly recommend Miranda for injections! Very knowledgeable, professional, and skillful!”
“My skin always feels so smooth and refreshed after this treatment.”
“The best Dr. & clinic around.”
“Thank you, Lora!! Great facial treatment!”
“Great! Quick! Easy! No bruising!”
“Dr. Miller did an outstanding job putting Silicone in sunken areas of my face. She definitely did her due diligence, by making me try other filler first. I am one of those people that burn right through all of the other types of fillers on the market. I am very pleased with her work and highly recommend her!”
“Always great care.”
“Natalie’s bedside manners were awesome. Very informative and understanding. She was great.”
“Emma was great. Very gentle and explained exactly what she was doing, how it would feel and what it was for.”
“Always a great experience!!!”
I have great respect for the St. Louis Skin Solutions team! Lora is exceptionally talented esthetician. Dr. Miller’s mastery is extraordinary. “Magic by Miller” should be her tagline. These two professionals continue their learning and it shows. The depth and breadth of their knowledge and skill levels are tour de force.
I have been a client 8+ years and I could not be happier with the services! I am so impressed with Dr. Miller’s patience and how much time she gives to her clients to ensure they are satisfied! The team is beyond awesome!”
Dr. Miller is amazing taking care of all my concerns, helping me get to a better me! The staff is welcoming and friendly like old friends. Great experience.”
I am always happy with the professionalism at St. Louis Skin Solutions. I would never go anywhere else!”
Dr. Miller is a magician!”
I love how Dr. Miller takes her time with me and is amazing at filler.
Very professional and excellent results. I enjoyed it.”
Most professional with excellent customer service and results are fabulous!
This is the team you want to put your best face forward. I look forward to every visit because they are more than professional and they care what is going on in my world. They want to help me erase any worries and help me to have the relaxed and perfect look that I want. Nice!”
My experience with the staff at St. Louis Skin Solutions is always enlightening and amazing. They listen to what I need and achieve my goals every time!
You guys are the best. Love how good my skin is looking! Love the services! Love the skincare products you offer!”
Loved the services, advice and products. All the questions were answered with patience. Love the ambience. I rate it 5 stars.”
ESR session went well. Lora is so patient with me; can’t believe the difference the treatments are making.
I've visited St Louis Skin Solutions a number of times for various services including laser for scars, visible facial capillaries, botox and fillers. Most of these were my first time receiving the treatment so needless to say, I was nervous. They always do an excellent job and the injections have left me with zero bruising! I will continue to come back, and all the way from the deep urban city limits. Worth it.
Nancy Pasternak Cunneen
The staff members are always kind and helpful. Easy to get appointments. Their parties are fun and informational. Dr. Miller is easy to work with on any issues. Prices are reasonable and they offer great products.
Dr. Miller and her entire team are wonderful. I’ve been thrilled with every treatment I’ve had, as well as the skincare products I now use at home. Because I’ve lost a lot of weight, I’ve been especially concerned about loose skin, and they’ve been able to help address this - and do so much more! I feel more confident than ever in my appearance.
Been going to Dr Miller for years and she is awesome !! I am a busy veterinarian that drives 40 minutes one way and she ALWAYS takes care of my needs ! She realizes that my only morning off is Wednesday , the day she is off !!! Thank you for going the extra mile to squeeze me in at the last minute !! You rock !! Thank you for making it easier for me to accommodate my patients !! I'll be sure to recommend your facility !
Julie Milonas McClellan
St. Louis skin solutions is the best! The entire staff is professional, fun and friendly! Would never go anywhere else for services!
Dr. Miller and the rest of the ladies were so kind and helpful! I was taken care of quickly and still enjoyed the time I was being seen, very good visit for me and will return in the future!
Jaclyn Avenevoli Schmitz
Educational... caring and understanding. Have a variety of services at great prices. Dr Miller and her team are very helpful and extremely supportive. I will be back!