I've always loved this quote from The Velveteen Rabbit. Even more so these past few years.
Being immersed in a community of women and men who have lost a child is not something one would choose to do. It's an exclusive club which only the broken, battered, and shattered join. No one wants to be in this club. We all wish we could claw our way out but forever we will be the bereaved parents. Forever.
The beauty in these people is real. I feel that when a piece of you is in heaven that it does radiate from within. The cracks within your heart illuminate more light than before. It's a catch 22 - we want our children back with all our hearts, but their absence has taught us so much.
They taught us to be real.