I saw this image on Facebook not too long ago and it made me laugh.
You all know how much I love food puns! I could probably post a food pun every day for a year, and still find them all as entertaining as right now.
Now let’s look deeper.
Whether you suffer from depression or not, I think every one of us has had a moment where we feel exactly like cannelloni.
Feeling like an outsider. Feeling like you don’t belong.
Being the cannelloni in this image, I can tell you, I’d also think:
They’re looking at me. They’re laughing. What embarrassing thing have I done now? What’s on my face? What’s wrong with my hair? What are they saying?
See how my thoughts spiral out of control? This is a symptom of my social anxiety. It’s very much like paranoia.
I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been told I think too much, or I’m ‘overthinking’.
Shout out to my cousin, Theresa (who I’ll post about in the future). We recently had a long conversation about a stupid riddle.
It didn’t have to be a long conversation; a normal person would have just let it go.
I’m not normal though, and the stupid riddle was going to bug me if I didn’t say all that I had to say. It’s bugging me now just thinking about it.
This is where Theresa is awesome, because she just let me rant.
She didn’t tell me to stop. She didn’t tell me I was overthinking, or getting carried away.
She let me get it all out before we safely moved on to a new conversation topic.
Anxiety is Not Our Friend
Poor Cannelloni is just over there alone with his thoughts, spiraling out of control. He has no idea that Penne has the right idea.
In fact, he’s probably thinking the opposite. “Penne is making fun of me because I’m all alone.”
If this situation were real, and Penne did invite Cannelloni to join the others, Cannelloni will likely say no.
He’s worked himself up and feels safer alone.
The easiest and safest solution, not knowing anyone else’s mental afflictions, is for the group to go to Cannelloni.
Don’t ask him to join; he’ll say no. Bring the group to him.
It might be uncomfortable in the beginning, but slowly it will feel more like a group dynamic.
Another thing that Penne could do, and this really depends on how comfortable he is in this situation, he could go over to Cannelloni by himself.
Introduce himself, spend five minutes getting to know him one to one, and then invite him to join the others.
Having one friend in the group can be more helpful than tackling all those new faces at once. If you’re able, be that friend.
Now Cannelloni can be more comfortable meeting the others because he has Penne on his side.
No matter what noodle you are in the bunch, remember there’s a whole pack of pasta somewhere out there with your name on it, missing you, needing you, thinking about you.
Find another noodle and know that you are never alone.