ToBeReal, a non-profit organization seeking to enhance the meaning of mental health and illness by challenging cultural definitions of normal and abnormal, provide a nuanced understanding of the authentic struggles that accompany the human condition. 

Sounds like the perfect place to be published, eh? I was a featured artist. See the full run HERE

A New Brand of Culture

Running into an ask out for Artists to get involved, I felt and urge to contribute. I submitted my work to hear back from them with appraisal of my work, with the request to share my connection to the struggle with the darker sides of life, mental disorders, my own story of life, as well as what it means "ToBeReal". 

It felt good to let my pen write freely, yet to be led. To be personal, yet from an empowered place. 

After I wrote, Todd, the founder, reached out to get coffee and speak about where this could all go, how I can get involved, and what's next for the both of us. So far our schedules have been all scattered - but the thought of collaborating with such a beautiful, supportive, inspiring, diverse and powerful idea - I will continue to schedule on. 


its's time to be real

below, part of my feature - what it means to me ToBeReal:

ToBeReal is to be authentic and transparent: know my darkness and to not be ashamed nor fearful of it, while also knowing that through the dark is the lightness of who I truly am. Being able to share all of me and to not hold back who I truly am on all fronts, allows for others to do the same. ToBeReal, is to be in connection in a way where there are no walls, nothing to hide and to realize that we are all in this journey of life. When I connect to who I truly am and what is coming up for me in my day to day interactions of life, I find that honesty with myself to then be able to share this with someone else – I find that we all are one. It doesn’t matter the disabilities and diseases that I have, the experiences that I have been through, nor the details of the who/what/when/where/how. When it comes down to it, the roots of our desires are all the same: to be love, to give love and to have love. Whatever love means to you, whatever you desire – so do I.
ToBeReal is to express whatever I can, in whatever way my heart desires. To speak about it with someone, inspire them to take the same leap into vulnerability and trust to share themselves and to stand for a world of authentic expression.

— Stephanie Guttenplan

Again, you can see the post HERE!


With Sparks O' Light,