My name is Karl Fitzgerald, I’m 29. I’m a former art student.
I was down at the Galway races and we were out on a night out and having drinks and on the way home an attack happened, where a guy came up and started to attack me and my friend. And amongst all the scuffle, on the ground, he bit my face. He bit a chunk of flesh off my face and that’s when I had to go to the hospital in Galway. I would never forget the day I went into the hospital to get the bandages removed off and then when I saw the full detail of the damage, I was kinda… a bit rough you know.
And I remember the lady, she put a bandage over my eye that day walking out and it was an unnecessary bandage really ‘cos it wasn’t bleeding, there was no scab or anything, it was just to kind of cover it. And I kind of took that on board because it was like…it was like my way of, kind of, you know hiding the scar, it seemed a bit more approachable, a bit more acceptable with the bandage on, as opposed to the scar. You see people and you talk to people and the eyes would go up and I ‘d never want to make people feel uncomfortable either, you know by even talking to people because people are like “oh my god, where do I look, where do I look.” You know. So a lot of the awkwardness would have been through other people’s reactions as opposed to my own psyche and mentality about the situation.
Not many people were doing the eyebrows or they certainly weren’t doing it at that time anyway. So when I saw eyebrow restoration, I was just going ‘yes’, you know, I did more research and I found Maurice. And that’s when I came into him and he told me what they’re doing, what they’re capable of doing and I was just ecstatic, I was delighted.
The hair transplant comes from here (gestures to back of neck), which is your donor area and of course this hair here is your head hair, so it grows like your head hair. Just like here (gestures to eyebrow) you have to trim it, I’ve got a bit of a comb over you know. So you have to kind of trim your eyebrow and keep it level. Some mornings if you might sleep on your face, you might wake up and it might be a bit over, but no, normally you just push it aside and keep it trim and err just like a haircut really. But it’s fascinating really. I think when I’m old man, I might just let it grow totally, have it going over my ear or something, you know.
It’s, the whole surgery and everything I’ve gone through has made a huge difference to my life of course. It has given me the confidence to get back amongst people because there was a time where you would put off things, certain social events just because you felt awkward. And like I said, my confidence was never shot through this whole ordeal, it was always through other people’s reactions and I’d never wanted to make anyone feel awkward. But now, I’m not having to put that stupid plaster over my head every day, which really annoyed me every time. I felt I had to do it at the time. And that’s why Maurice is a saviour and fair play to the whole bunch of lads, everyone. They’re just brilliant, everyone. They gave me my eye brow back.