To say that 2020 has been a rough year is a laughable understatement. If you are superstitious, you might be shaking your finger at me as if daring to talk about it holds the power to summon the next apocalyptic sign. What could possibly sound scarier than murder hornets? Perhaps being quarantined all alone with small children as you try to process and recover from the biggest blow the universe can throw you. When you get sucker-punched by life there’s nobody you can charge with a foul and you can’t exactly call a time-out. However, a time-out is just how I have been looking at this quarantine and I am here to tell you that there is always a silver lining.
If you have ever lost a loved one, I hope that you were fortunate enough to be surrounded by family and friends in the immediate aftermath. If you were this fortunate, then you also probably know how the calls, meals, and check-ins all slowly begin to spread out and then fade away. As the time between visitors grew, I was ready to welcome the silence and knew I needed some space to let reality set in. I needed that space, but it was still heartbreaking to see everyone get back to life as usual. If you have ever lost a loved one then you know that one of the hardest things to witness is the world go on like normal when your own world is completely shattered. 2020 has been a rough year for everyone, and when I lost Taylor, the world stopped with me.
I can’t help but think what a fortunate situation I am in as a widow in 2020. I am humbled daily when I think about all the people who showed up for Taylor’s service, traveling from all over the country to offer their support. Had the pandemic broken out in the U.S. a month earlier, we would not have been able to celebrate Taylor’s life the way we did. I also thought I would be ready to go back to work after spring break as I only teach three days a week and am fortunate to be a part of a wonderful and supportive school. I went back to teaching in January 2019 when a great position opened up and just sort of fell into my lap. I believe that God knew then I was going to need a job as a single mother and provided me with the right opportunity. I am grateful that I was able to finish the school year online. I needed my work to give me a break from grieving 24/7, but probably didn’t need to push myself to get back in the classroom just yet.
“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
The bible tells us to be thankful in ALL circumstances. We are not commanded to pick and choose when and under what conditions we want to give thanks. Be thankful for the good times AND the bad, our fortunes AND our misfortunes, the joys AND the sufferings of life. If you are not familiar with Corrie Ten Boom, I strongly encourage you to read her story. Corrie and her sister were imprisoned in a flea infested concentration camp during WWII. As faithful Christians, they thanked God for ALL aspects of the situation they were in, including the fleas. The sisters later learned that the fleas were what kept the guards away from their encampment, allowing them freedom to read and share the bible with the other prisoners.
Sometimes I want to get angry. I want to run away and pretend that this isn’t real. I want to wallow in the fetal position all day, but instead I obediently thank God for my fleas. The Lord has a purpose for EVERYTHING. So much good, learning and community has come out of this pandemic. The quarantine has definitely rocked our normal routine, but I am thankful for the break I was given from the real world. I am thankful for the time I got to hide away with my family and love on my girls. I am thankful it’s 2020 and I have the convenience to work, communicate and even order groceries from the comfort of my own home, speaking of which, I am thankful for the roof over my head. Take time this week to be joyful and give thanks to God for the circumstances you are facing, no matter what they are, because you never know how the Lord is using your own fleas for His greater purpose.
Copyright © 2021 M. Marley, LLC
13 thoughts on “Widowed and Quarantined”
I’m humbled each time I read your post.
Thank you for reading and for the support.
I absolutely loved this post Molly. I think the extra time to focus on faith, family and friends has been a very welcomed change for me. 2020 has been full of “unknown” things and I am grateful to have such a selfless Gad to look to for guidance and GRACE. I need to get better at thanking God for all the little things “fleas”.
Thank you, Jessica. I have always loved Corrie’s story. It is so in line with Taylor’s mindset of controlling your attitude (and thanking God) no matter the circumstances.
Molly, your faith and strength is truly inspirational. Thank you for inspiring all of us, especially me. Keeping you and your girls in my thoughts and prayers.
Thank you, Mary Kathryn. We are grateful for every single prayer and the friends behind them. Hope you are well!
Everyone needs to read this post and hear this message in 2020. I love all of your posts and am inspired every time I read your message. Thank you for spreading the Word and teaching us to be thankful always. Love you, Molly ❤️
Love you, Alex! Thankful for almost 15 years of friendship (and lots of shenanigans).
You are such a encouragement. You have a beautiful gift. I pray that the Lord bless your wonderful family.
Molly, your words are simply beautiful. It’s touching how your story is told with such grace and beauty.
Thank you, Barbara. Missing our gym talks. Hope y’all are doing well.
Your story showed up in my newsfeed and I’m so glad I read. I have Always loved Corrie ten Boom’s story. I’m expecting our third girl. I’m scheduled to be induced today and she is named Corrie 💝 Two weeks ago we lost my brother to addiction and have had the difficulty of facing death in the midst of this pandemic. Unfortunately, my dad contracted COVID in the days following my brother’s death. He’s in ICU and fighting for his life. It has been an unbelievable two weeks. Your words were a sweet reminder to me this morning and I’ll carry them in my heart and we get ready to meet our sweet Corrie.
Congratulations on your third girl and I am so sorry for your loss. There are so many negatives to social media, but I love how God uses it to connect us to each other. I will be praying His comfort and protection for you and your family today. You have picked such a strong name for your baby and it sounds like she will get lots of strength from her mama too💕