This helped me... perhaps it will help some of you too...

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the skin horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't often happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are real, you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

~From The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams

"The toy rabbit magically becomes Real when he realizes that he is genuinely loved by the little boy with whom he stayed during a serious illness. I believe that all of us become real once we know that we are loved, even if we are imperfect, bruised, or disfigured. We are real when we can finally accept ourselves and when we know that we are loved for who we really are."

~From Forgotten Memories by Barbara Schave, portion of Afterward by Marjorie Title Ford

I have to think that we become Real when we learn to love ourselves, regardless, and even because of our imperfections, bruises and disfigurements.