Covid-19 has brought death to the forefront of our minds and prompted us to think about what a good death is in these new circumstances.
Until now, most people haven’t been confronted with their own mortality much, despite death being the common denominator that unites all living beings.
The debate has started about what the new world will be when we come out the other side. Many are predicting a huge upheaval in social and economic norms. Personally, I’m not so convinced, I think we’ll ‘revert to type’ quite quickly and we’ll get back to where we were, albeit at the cost of a recession.
That said, it’s been wonderful that everyone is pulling together in these difficult times. The roads are quiet, the skies are clear of airplane noise & pollution, we can hear the early morning dawn chorus – everything seems a lot more peaceful and the pace of life has slowed. Everyone seems less stressed, more friendly and tolerant, people are smiling at each other as they walk slowly past keeping a social distance of course. So in many ways, it would be lovely if some of this would remain in the future. Time will tell.
However, for some who have lost ones to the coronavirus, this will be a time of great sadness and emotional upheaval. It’s certainly made people think about death, every day we’re reminded of the death count and the media is keeping us informed of some of the well-known people who have died.
Will the coronavirus pandemic be the tipping point for people to talk more openly about death and dying, lifting the taboo? I doubt it, but it’s certainly made the subject of death more topical and it maybe people will start to think of their mortality more, and just maybe it will start to open up the conversation… I hope so.