A distinguishing feature about sunflowers is that with the start of the day begins their romance with the rising sun. Throughout the course of the day, they keep facing the sun following its movement from east to west. When the sun goes down, these bright yellow hosts of happiness face east filled with anticipation that the star will come up again the following day. Indeed, this behaviour is what nurtures them throughout their life. However, if we look at it closely, the behaviour of humankind is not quite different from that of these sunflowers’.

With this continuing lockdown, each of us have become adept at leading a retrospective lifestyle. But, what we don’t seem to realize is that much like the sunflower, we also have a responsibility to be a sound board to those around us. The Coronavirus has kept us inside the confines of our houses but the silver lining is that it has allowed us to connect on a much deeper level with those close to us, be it the immediate family, neighbours or distant relatives.

Similar to the sunflowers who face east when the sun is not in the sky, our supposed ‘east’ is the bonds and relations we form during this period of quarantine. Imagine this: we have been stuck in our homes. To avoid drowning in this ocean of boredom, we start talking to people whom we wouldn’t have talked to in normal circumstances; be it a friend or just a random person. However, when we do start talking to them, these newfound relationships make us realize how similar we are to are acquaintances. These newly-formed friendships speaks volumes about what other people’s perspectives are and how they are navigating the ‘ocean of boredom’ that we find ourselves in. We come to know what the next person is doing. We come to know what the next person is going through. We come to know what the next person has done before. We come to know what the next person’s aspirations are. All in all, we come to know who the next person really is.

We say that the social media has connected us; that it has brought us closer in ways that the older generations thought to be unthinkable. But has it really? In this deluge of information that we encounter, we undergo a rush of negativity and inferiority. But we don’t really show it worried about the judgements of others. It has been this lockdown and the consequent apathy which forced us to mingle (although digitally) and finally provide an outhouse to our pent up emotions and relieved us of all the negative sentiments.

Thus, we truly should take a leaf from the behaviour exhibited by sunflowers, that is, in trying times, we should look out and treat people with kindness. We should converse with them and attempt to connect with them in a deeper manner. Be the soundboard to their thoughts. Be the Mike to their Harvey. Be the Robin to their Batman. Be the one person they can unleash all their thoughts to and feel that they have someone in the world who cares about them and loves them like a true friend.

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