I opened up a Dove chocolate today and the following was inside the wrapper:
Happiness in is the heart, not in the circumstances.
This is true. Circumstances happen. Emotions are in your heart. But when your heart is broken, because of the circumstance that your child has died, it's an entirely different case. Some emotions are felt more strongly. Sometimes emotions are felt that are new to you. My first thought upon reading this statement was to add on to the end "except when your heart is broken". When your heart is broken emotions don't react and respond in the same way that they used do. Your heart used to be whole. Now it is in a million pieces. This is what allows us to be happy, sad, angry, frustrated, terrified and jealous all at the same time. An unbroken heart is used to working as a whole; a broken heart is now working to become whole.
I think this is one of the most basic things that those around us who haven't had a broken heart don't understand. They don't understand that when we hear a new pregnancy announcement from a couple that we are happy for them that they have started a new life, we are sad for us because we didn't get to bring our new life home and have a lifetime with that child, we are missing our children, we are jealous that they have the chance to have a baby without living in fear of losing that child and we are terrified (for them) that they may lose that child and know our pain. We have a myriad of emotions because each piece of our broken hearts is able to feel a distinct emotion that is completely separate from the other pieces.
As time passes since the death of your child, and your heart has begun to piece itself back together, I think people think you are "back to your old self" because they see you smile and laugh again. What they don't realize is that your heart is just beginning to be pieced back together again; your heart is beginning to go from a million pieces to half a million pieces and have your heart begin working together again. But no matter how long it's been, your heart will never be whole again. Your heart will always have pieces missing...those pieces belong to your children and, if you believe in an afterlife, you will only get them back when you are together again.