Who would have ever believed it? I was a 32-year-old nurse, very pregnant with my second child and a bit concerned when the Plastic Surgery team of Dianne Leeb, MD and B.A. Pihl (who happened to be husband and wife) sat me down to let me know they had decided to retire. My dream job with these two incredible physicians and our awesome staff was coming to an end, and I was heartbroken.
When I came to work at this practice in 1996, I quickly fell in love with this staff, the clients that felt like friends, and the incredible family atmosphere that was fostered. When my first child was born, Dr. Leeb made arrangements in our client schedule that he could come to the office with me on non-surgery days and we would share his care-taking duties around our appointments. She was one of the first to buy him a Christmas outfit, and she was never too busy to hear a “Dawson” story. The office staff was like a house full of Aunties, and even the very formal Dr. Pihl delighted with me in my new position as a mother.
When I realized I was pregnant with my second child, we rejoiced once again. However, we were hit hard when the tragedy of 9/11 left our country feeling fragile and our business very quiet. Those were such sad days, and I could see the toll it was taking on my work family.
The day I sat with Dr. Leeb and Dr. Pihl to discuss their plans to retire, they also talked over a proposition with me. They suggested I continue to work the skin care part of our practice until the babies were a little older and I could get a “real job.” At that time I was offering chemical peels and skin care products to clients on days when I was not doing surgery. The doctors offered to let me take the client information that I wanted and to stay on as my medical directors.
On Wednesday, February 27th, we retired the practice. It was a sad day. On Saturday, March 2nd, I gave birth to my beautiful Ella. It was a glorious day. On March 23rd, I took my notebook with my 25 clients and started About Face Skin Care. It has been a wild ride every day since.
Flashes of memories in those first years make me laugh. Trying to have a serious, professional conversation with a client who was reacting to sunscreen while snapping my fingers and banging on a chair to get 17-month-old Dawson to stop trying to feed four weeks old Ella his fish sticks. (I was on a corded phone and couldn’t reach him.) Packing my car with the infant carrier and infant, toddler, a box of products, massage table, facial equipment, credit card machine and towels I had laundered at home and needed to do a quick inspection of myself before I saw clients to make sure I had on two shoes and a puke free blouse.
I was so fortunate to have my grandparents who loved watching the babies a couple of days per week, so I could get my dream started. The flexibility to be home with them and to be able to work knowing they had even better care than Sam or I could offer for the day was something I can never repay to them.
On Dawson’s first day of kindergarten, I hired my first employee, Cherri Dursee, to answer the phone a few hours per day. I am fortunate that she still works with me and has gone back to school to become one of the best aestheticians I have known. Business continued to grow, and that thought of getting a “real job” blurred.
In 2010, Sam and I decided that we had to make a change for the family. He was working in Powers Ferry and getting home late. I was trying to do my clinical work all day and administrative work at night, and we were getting home to the kids in time to quickly feed them and put them to bed. Thankfully, we had Miss Beverly and her wonderful family to look after them after school, and they had just as much love as they had enjoyed with my grandparents. However, it didn’t feel right for us.
We took a huge leap, and Sam left the corporate world to take on the marketing and admin side of About Face Skin Care. Sleepless nights disappeared slowly as we realized “we got this.” We hired more incredible staff, we continued to network and grow, and we were able to be home with those two awesome kids in the evening.
We are getting ready to celebrate Ella’s 16th birthday tomorrow. The fact that my baby is reaching this milestone blows me away. The fact that my third baby (About Face) has reached this milestone the same month makes me smile. They are a lot alike in a lot of ways. Able to thrive without my constant attention and worry due to the incredible people who have helped shape them and continue to help make them thrive. To both of my babies, I wish you a very happy day.
As a gift to all of you that have helped make About Face Skin Care such a success (and those we have not met yet), we would like to offer you 16% off our products and services for the month of March. Please consider coming in for a free consultation if you would like to know more about our products and services, including our exclusive NonSurgical Facelift, Laser Hair Removal, and Vampire Facelift. We can’t wait to celebrate with you!
About Face Skin Care is located behind Lowe’s in the Snellville Commons office park. Schedule your appointment at www.aboutfaceskin.com or call 770-935- FACE (3223). Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.