Lately even though my health is doing so much better I have found myself a bit frustrated with the melasma on my face. Melasma is a condition in which brown patches appear on the face due to hormonal changes. I’ve always struggled with my hormones. Terribly painful periods along with complications & ruptures from ovarian cysts. 6 years ago after following two surgeries for ovarian cysts complication & endometriosis my doctor & I decided to shut down my menstrual cycles with Lupron injections. These chemical injections placed me in an induced state of menopause for five years. When my periods began coming back last year I noticed little hyperpigmentation on my face. I didn’t think much of it. Thought it was new freckles. But the spots began to grow & darken. I began to become very concerned. I saw my lead doctor & he diagnosed the spots as melasma, due to my hormones. I have received 2 PicoSure Laser treatments with my friends at I can see that the treatments have begun to break up the pigment. The melasma always worsens with my periods but I’m still hopeful that we will be able to clear it up. I know there are people with far worse skin conditions then me & these patches on my face could be easily mistaken for birthmarks. I know some people can’t receive treatments due to finances, location, or other reasons that our out of their control. I’m truly thankful that is just melasma & not something more serious. And that I’m able to receive such a innovative treatment. I’m also working in coming to terms that if the melasma doesn’t go away then I will have to learn to own the spots & love my skin as it is. I think for me it’s less about appearance — when someone on my hike asked me if I had face planted I didn’t start crying or hide my face, I looked them in the eyes & said “No, I have skin condition” yeah they were taken aback but fuck that — it’s more that this discoloration triggers the trauma with my health battle still held inside me. I’m thankful I’m doing better, that’s why I’m smiling but I wanted to share the mixed emotions behind the smile as well 💚 #melasma #hormoneimbalance 📸 @shaneharderphotography

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