David Kropp, Certified Aromatherapist

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear . . ."

Posted by Nancy Lee on January 01, 2022

“ For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Tim. 1:7 (NKJV)

To celebrate the new year, I share with you an inspiring story of a new beginning, the story of David Kropp, who seven years ago made a difficult decision that changed the trajectory of his life and led to life and blessing. As David’s Aunt through marriage, I am proud to claim him as family. I am continually encouraged by his creativity and enthusiastic outlook.   

David Kropp, Certified Aromatherapist

In 2014, at the age of 34, David Kropp had attained his dream job.  He was the manager of the bakery on the State University of New York campus in Oneonta. It was a good position with a lucrative salary and generous benefits.  David enjoyed trying new recipes and expanding the menu of baked goods available to the students on campus. He was also in charge of providing food for special events and enjoyed teaching an adjunct baking class for the dietetic program. 

David had a passion for baking for as long as he can remember.  His career as a baker started while, as a homeschooled junior in high school, he was accepted as an apprentice at Elena’s Sweet Indulgence in Oneonta, NY, a bakery that specializes in pastries. 

After David was on the job for only a day, Elena called David’s father. “I’ll gladly take your son as an apprentice,” she said, “except you will have to let me pay him.  He is too good to be volunteering his time.”   His apprenticeship lasted for two years until he graduated in 1997. After working for Elena, David started his own wedding cake business.

In 2004, when he discovered that his wife was pregnant, David decided he needed a job with benefits. He walked into the dining hall on the university campus and asked for a job. David was hired on the spot with an entry-level position. Within a year, he worked his way up to a supervisor, and within another year, he became the manager of the bakery.

Ten years later, in 2014, David had job security and a bright future as a manager at the state university. 

But there was a problem. Beginning in 2012, David developed stomach issues which, after many visits to the ER at various hospitals, led to a diagnosis of IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and severe acid reflux. Medicines didn’t help, but David was able to manage his symptoms by drastically altering his diet and by using natural remedies.

David’s medical problems worsened in 2014 when he began exhibiting symptoms of heart failure. A racing heartbeat and difficulty breathing led him to a cardiologist. After extensive medical tests, it was determined that the root of his problems was stress.

David took a two-month leave of absence from his job.  Away from the stress of his workplace, his IBS and heart symptoms went away.  He felt like a new person. During this time, he began experimenting with essential oils and discovered their healing benefits.

“We felt like we had the old Davie back,” his wife Karen said. “It is the Davie that the kids and I know and love.”

But as soon as David went back to work, his symptoms started up again. David was faced with the most difficult decision of his life. Should he stay at the job he loved, one that provided good income and security, but was destroying his health? Or should he quit his job and pursue something else?

He came home from work one day and said to his wife, “I completely feel if I stay at this job, in ten years I will be dead.”

David chose to quit his job, giving up security in pursuit of improving his quality of life, a decision which he does not regret. 

David admits that this was a scary time for him. “Karen and I had to set aside our fears and trust in God to get us through,” David said. “It was tough. We had three young children at the time. But we did what we had to.”

David’s favorite Bible verse, “ For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind,” (2 Tim. 1:7) came alive for him during this time.

While recuperating after he left his job, David began learning more about the benefits of essential oils. He enrolled in classes at the Aromahead Institute School of Essential Oil Studies and became a Certified Aromatherapist.

Today David has a thriving business. David has created his own line of aromatherapy and essential oil products, Essentials by DK, which he sells at markets and vendor shows in his local area and through his website. Also, David shares his knowledge of essential oils through one-on-one consultation and through workshops.

Essentials by DK was impacted by the shut-down caused by Covid-19. But the shut-down also motivated David to come up with creative solutions. David was concerned that many of the vendors he worked closely with were hard hit, especially those who did not have a presence on the internet. He created an “Artisan Box” which features a collection of items from a variety of small businesses. For instance, a box might include items such as honey, maple syrup, specialty coffees or tea, barbecue sauce, chocolates, and essential oil products. David sells them on his website, and each box that is sold helps to support several small businesses.

David’s Artisan boxes are my favorite gift to give. It is so much fun to watch the recipient open the box and discover what is in it; there is always something for everyone. And I feel good about supporting small businesses.

David is not content to simply succeed as a small business owner. He is active in his community, working to help others succeed as well. As a part of “Destination Oneonta,” David helps plan and implement family-friendly activities and promote small businesses in his small, quaint city located in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains. He will serve as the 2022 president of the organization.

One of the events David helps oversee each year, with assistance from a dedicated group of volunteers, is the “Gingerbread Jubilee.”  Individuals and businesses make festive gingerbread houses which are displayed throughout the city.  This year, Oneonta has the incredible honor of being featured on allrecipes.com,  “12 Magnificent Gingerbread House Displays You Need to See This Holiday Season.” Quite an honor for a small Upstate NY city with a population of only 14,000!

David hopes his story is an inspiration to you. To those in the same situation he was in, he gives the following advice: “Follow your heart; follow your passion, and trust in God to provide for you.”

Check out David's website Essentials by DK.