one of our new favorite shirts…for so many reasons.
beautiful design by an amazing artist in support of bringing exposure to Epilepsy.
Sunset Fin is the work of Matthew Allen. An artist who suffers from Epilepsy but has used Epilepsy to fuel his passions in life.
1 in 26 people will be diagnosed with Epilepsy and 65 Million globally have been diagnosed with the disease.
from the Artist:
I grew up loving baseball. Baseball was my life, my identity. As a child I was known among the kids at school as a great ball player, but as I entered high school my dreams outgrew me. I failed to make the baseball team and my identity was shattered. I found solace and rebirth in surfing. My focus shifted and my identity with it. I was now a surfer.
The summer before my senior year of high school my life took another turn. I set off for Hawaii, hitching a ride with a local church youth group. I paddled out to surf the waves of Hawaii's north shore. While I sat in the water I knew that something was not right. I paddled 200 yards to shore only to arrive unable to speak. I remember only handing over my board to my father only to wake to the sight of an ambulance driver, wondering if I was in heaven.
Little did I know that I had experienced a seizure, and that I would be diagnosed with epilepsy.
I was unable to drive or surf until my condition stabilized. This meant no driving or surfing for most of my senior year of high school. After having my identity stripped again I found solace in my new found faith and an outlet in the arts. This was to be my passion. I took as many art classes as possible, started playing guitar, making music. My life had slowed down enough for me to realize where my true talents resided.
I don't know if I would have discovered my gift without having my epileptic seizure. I do know that it changed my life for the better. It helped me to find my true identity, reinforced my faith, forced me to explore a more balanced life and introduced me to a part of myself that I had been neglecting. I am fortunate that my epilepsy is mild and pretty well controlled with medication. It is a part of my life but it does not dominate it. I know that for many their epilepsy is a huge burden but for me it the load is relatively light and the path it has set me on has been more than I could have dreamed of.
To see more of Matthew’s art visit MattAllen.com