Today we’d like to introduce you to Karl Kroeppler.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I have been an active, working artist since 1990. My subject matter has changed over the years. I now devote my time and research to educating and bringing awareness to my affliction with Trigeminal Neuralgia. Below is a brief timeline.
While toweling water off my face, I felt a small, spark-like sensation in my forehead. I didn’t think much of it at the time. However, the “sparks” became more intense. Over the course of a week, they became more painful and more pronounced. What began as a small “spark” became, at times, an instant sensation that threw me to the ground, afraid to touch my face out of fear that I could make it worse. I screamed uncontrollably. I prayed the pain would subside so that I could live one more day. I would describe it as a lightning bolt festering in my head for one, very long moment, countless times a day.
To put it in words belittled its painful visits to my head. It afflicted me seasonally and I never knew when the season would begin or end. I was finally, successfully, diagnosed with trigeminal neuralgia. It is referred to as “the suicide disease.” It has been listed as among the most painful conditions known to human-kind.
-May 2013 Significant episode, increase in severity, emergency room, episodes now maintained with seizure medications.
-November 22, 2015 Episodes increased in severity and duration, intractable trigeminal neuralgia, ambulance, emergency room, oral seizure medications no longer effective, intravenous seizure medications administered.
-November 24, 2015 Episode, emergency room.
-November 25, 2015 Episode, ambulance, emergency room.
-November 29, 2015 Episode, ambulance, emergency room, five-day in-patient pain stabilization needed.
-December 7, 2015 Evaluation with Doctor Benedict
-December 9, 2015 Pre-op
-December 11-14, 2015 Hospital, Microvascular Decompression (MVD-brain surgery) to relieve symptoms of intractable trigeminal neuralgia.
-April 2016 Symptoms return.
-March 2017 Symptoms increase in severity to include episodes of notable length.
Ingesting Carbamazepine to minimize the shocks to my face and eliminate the lengthy episodes.
-April 2017 Appointment set for cyberknife procedure to “deaden” the nerve; to eliminate shocks to my face and to eliminate lengthier, excruciating episodes.
-May 15, 2017 Cyberknife procedure Kennestone Hospital under the supervision of Dr. McLaughlin. Success of procedure will be determined when completely weaned off all anti-seizure medication.
Present: Procedure has proven to be ineffective. However, interaction with Dr. McLaughlin has led to a “cocktail” of medication that allows me to lead a relatively normal, day-to-day existence.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Being an artist, in my experience, has its ups and downs. It’s a beautiful life full of expression and creativity but at the same time it is very difficult to make “ends meet.”
I have been an active, working artist since 1990 when I obtained my Bachelors of Arts Degree in Studio Art from Arizona State University. I’ve had to find employment from time to time in the sign industry in order to keep the bills paid. In 2002, I decided to return to Arizona State to obtain my Masters in Fine Arts Degree in Drawing and Painting.
I am now well into raising two children, working to keep the bills paid, I own and maintain a home and have a beautiful wife. In 2015, I underwent neurosurgery and in 2017 I had both hips replaced. I remind myself constantly of how grateful I am to be an artist but the society in which I live doesn’t always provide enough support for those struggling in the arts.
I have my moments of success but rejection is far more prevalent. It’s what I have grown to accept. I keep focused on the good and the goals I still need to reach rather than ponder upon the negative.
Karl Gustav Kroeppler – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I am an active, working artist that specializes in drawings, paintings and mixed media paintings and drawings on experimental surfaces. My research focuses on educating and bringing awareness to the disease, Trigeminal Neuralgia.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Persevering through the pain of trigeminal neuralgia in order to prepare for an adjunct teaching position at Georgia State University’s Ernest G. Welch School of Art and Design.
Persevering through neurosurgery to relieve the intractable pain of trigeminal neuralgia in order to prepare for an adjunct teaching position at Georgia State University’s Ernest G. Welch School of Art and Design.
Persevering through bilateral hip surgery in order to continue with an adjunct teaching position at Georgia State University’s Ernest G. Welch School of Art and Design.
- Website: kroeppler.weebly.com
- Instagram: twitter.com/@kroeppler
- Facebook: facebook.com/karl.kroeppler
- Twitter: twitter.com/@kroeppler