COVID-19: Contemplating Death

Patrick Darrington, Staff Writer

As I sit in my room typing this column, I can’t help but think about people who may have COVID-19 or have a loved one who has this virus. I can not help but think about those who have died or had a loved one who has died. I can not help but think about death. 

I’m not a dark or morbid person. I love life and have always thought about living life to the fullest degree. However, COVID-19 has made it difficult to ponder anything that does not involve it. 

There is no escape because notification after notification that pops into my phone shows the lives taken by COVID-19. Going to social media will not help because people tweet, upload, or post about a loved one being taken by the virus or how it has affected their life. 

Granted, I do not fear my own demise since I am 20 and fully healthy. However, I fear the demise of my loved ones. I fear the demise of my 11-month-old daughter. I fear the demise of my autoimmune compromised girlfriend. 

I do not mean to sound so death-obsessed, but in these times what can I do? Blame the virus, not me, because all my actions are taken to prevent the untimely end for any of my loved ones or anyone I encounter.

My obsession with death in this time is due to my love of life and wanting to see everyone live. My empathy and sympathy for others is so strong that all I can do is think about how this affects others around me. It’s in my nature to be this way. 

Even in normal times, though, death is always lurking in minds and actions. We wear our seatbelts to prevent the worst from happening or put safety signs and warnings on everything. 

The virus, however, has forced me and so many others to think not just about one person’s own death, but also about the deaths of those we may not know. It has forced people to think about being culpable and responsible for spreading the virus to someone who may die from it. 

COVID-19 has changed my thinking and how I see the world. It has made me think about so much that I never contemplated or struggled with before. This virus has allowed me all the time in the world to wrestle with the idea of death as well as my responsibility to those around me.