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My finest moment... Saturday February 6, 2016

When we're depressed we struggle to remember anything good we did. As we recover we remember times when we achieved, no matter how insignificant it was. I must be recovering because I recently remembered this story.

I was playing in a rugby game in Burton-on-Trent. They had a huge pack of forwards who all seemed to work at the brewery (and didn't look as though much of the output made it past them and through the doors.) Their only strategy was to use their huge players to batter their way forward, which was exhausting to defend. (Imagine Indiana Jones trying to rugby-tackle the boulder instead of running away from it).

As they won the ball yet again they hoisted a high-kick which was coming down just outside our "22." It was well-placed, whoever caught it would be immediately hit by their onrushing forwards. As I ran back I noticed that although my team-mates were heading in the general direction of where the ball would land, for some strange reason no-one was actually getting into position to catch it.

Someone pulled the string in the middle of my back and my unbidden voice said "mine!" Immediately I sensed opponents assessing my bulk (not huge) and calculating course and speed to impact like some meat-seeking missile.

I caught the ball and got hit by a stampede of Staffordshire beef. I was desperately trying to avoid being turned or losing the ball while being driven back on the run. After a few centuries (!!) team-mates began to arrive, holding me up and slowing then stopping the retreat. Once stable I rolled the ball along the deck to the scrum-half, who kicked into touch level with where the move started. We hadn't lost a yard.

We lost the game, and overall I didn't have much of a game, but for a fleeting second I did what needed to be done and felt good about it.

(This may not actually be my finest moment, but I like telling the story... )

So what was your finest moment?

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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Anonymous Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 5:37am

What a lovely memory of your good moment, and you didn't rubbish yourself for the rest of the game, well done. So often one can have a good moment which we tend to dismiss, but we manage to analyse the rest of the game, that we were no good. I once played a game of bowls for some reason I did "nothing wrong" my back didn't ache, arthritis in my hand didn't hurt, a magic moment. I do remember I was playing with 3 men who I didn't know, because I have come across (dare I say, I can only call them) bitchy women, who are competitive, and make me feel like a child instead a grown woman, for that reason I don't raise my game I seem to crumble. One part of my depression I spend too much time being aware of people around me, trying to say the right thing, and listening to their comments which I take on board, and rubbish myself, I can't do this, no good at that etc, everybody is better that me.
Oh! sorry Norman, enough of me, well done you, keep that memory, perhaps one day a grandchild will say "tell me again Grandad about that magic moment when you caught the ball and set up a terric goal, hope I can do that grandad like you did??"

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 7:36pm

"make me feel like a child instead a grown woman" no-one can make you feel inferior without your consent. why let them? imagine them naked, no-one plays bowls well when naked!

Adam Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:00am

Great story Norman, I enjoyed that! It reminded me of a much less glorious moment in my first rugby game at school, aged 8. Playing fly half, I was tackled and ended up buried under a ruck for what seemed like forever. When the pile of bodies above me had removed itself my grandfather, bless him, who had been watching from the touch line came on to the pitch to rub my scraped knee and make sure I was ok. Embarrassing at the time, but it still makes me smile 40 years later!

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:20am

It is always difficult watching those you love try something that seems risky. All part of asserting personality and becoming the adult, but grand-dads may not see it that way!

LillyPet Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:20am

Morning Norman,
What a great moment to cherish and I loved your story telling! :)
I can think of things that I've achieved, but I think my finest hour is yet to come!
Have a good weekend and thanks for a great blog! :) Hugs to All. LP :) xx

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:21am

"my finest hour is yet to come! " Get out the lippy and write that on the mirror, and say it it every morning!

Hopeful One Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:31am

Hi Norman- a very helpful post . "Discounting the positive' is a trick that the depressed mind plays on its victim. By constantly and deliberately reminding ourselves of the positives is the way to slowly get rid of the "old tape" and rewrite it so lifting us out of our gloom.

My finest moment? We were playing a golf foursome match . We were level when we reached the 18th green. My chip landed some 20 ft from the flag . Everyone putted but fluffed. It was down to me . If I sank that putt we would win. I had three pairs of eyes focused on me . I had by then learnt the basics of mindfulness. I focused on my breathing and slowly all that remained in my mind was my putter head the ball and the hole . I was ' in the moment,' Everthing seemed to slow down . I pulled the putter back and made minor adjustments which I was able to do as things had slowed down so much. To the outsider it would look like a ordinary stroke. As soon as I launched that ball I knew it was heading for the hole . As they say " the crowd roared"

A golf joke..

There are these two guys. about to putt. The green is close to a road . A funeral cortège is passing by. One of the players stops ,lays down his putter , and bows towards the cortège . The other player is deeply impressed.and says ' That was very respectful.thing to do . " Do you know that person?" His partner says " Yes .That's my wife "

Tra la.

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 7:39pm

"all that remained in my mind was my putter head the ball and the hole" Cometh the hour, cometh the man. Lee Trevino was once asked about the pressure of putting to win a major. He replied: "that isn't pressure: pressure is putting for a ten dollar match with only five dollars in your pocket..."

Hopeful One Sun, Feb 7th 2016 @ 7:53am

Hi Norman- thanks for that Lee Trevino story which I will add to my repertoire of goll stories. But it's so true. I hope yo are still staying off the wagon. An update would be apprecited.

Soulmansblue Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:36am

Hi Norman,

that took some courage, thanks for telling the story [again -grin].

I can identify very closely with it. In my time I used to be a goalkeeper and quite a crazy-one. I was often to be seen throwing myself at opponents feet in one on one situations. I ended up in hospital or A&E on a few occasions.

With regard to your actions it shows me that you not only have a back-bone or that you will step into the breach when the situation calls for it but that you have that hidden strength within that is not often shown.

You have probably called upon this many times in your fight against depression and not even realised. Norman you are a fighter please don't stop, call upon your inner strength as much as possible. The more you use it the stronger you will become.

My finest hour I believe was when I stopped only thinking about myself. I think God gave me depression and put me in therapy to enable me to learn that I wasn't the only person in this world. Definitely not the only one who mattered.

I learnt so much in therapy, I saw and heard first hand what other people had to go through and deal with. Slowly, very slowly I opened up and allowed myself to feel not just for myself but for those around me. I rediscovered empathy and once again I started to feel for others.

I had been unable to give or receive hugs for years, some thirty years ever since my Dad walked out. From that moment I'd shut all feelings in, no way was I ever going to allow myself to be hurt like that again. In doing so I didn't, wouldn't couldn't feel for anyone.

In therapy seeing the others giving and sharing hugs with each other started to stir within me. The others tried to include me and for a long time I resisted, but the others didn't give up on me. Now I love to both receive and to give hugs.

That was the start to me becoming a much better person. Now I don't only give those I see in need of a hug but when I can I help others in other ways as well. As you said Norman it makes me feel good and now unlike in the past if I'd helped someone I'd expect something in return, now I don't.

Learning to care again was my finest hour so to speak because it took a little longer. Thanks Norman for bring that moment back into my thoughts. It's good to care, share and love. It's great being there for others and not trying to be an island.

Take care my friend, excellent blog.

Mary Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 10:38am

SMB - you can have no idea how much your words have moved me this morning. I want to rush over to where ever you are and give you another big hug to just begin to make up for all those you didn't allow yourself to give and receive for those 30 years! Go well and gently, dear soul.

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:42am

"Learning to care again was my finest hour" Have you heard of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs? (Wikipedia will help) Sometimes when survival takes all our energy we lose sight of the higher needs.

Anonymous Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 2:11pm

You are right Soulsman! Realising that the world does not revolve round us alone and that we are unique but one of 7 billion other unique people on this planet, gives us another perspective with which to deal with our problems. It's good to get away from the me. me .me thoughts and forget our failings,worries and ego; instead, shed that heavy selfie burden and lighten up. It helps me to think like this when socialising. Jul x

Soulmansblue Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 10:48pm

Hi Mary, Thank you for your kind words. I would have embraced your hug had you been here to give it. thank you for the thought. Right now I could very much do with a hug. I have a friend who I like a lot but she only sees me as a friend. Yes, she knows how I feel, but she doesn't find me attractive in that way. I can't say that I blame her, she is quite pretty and a good few years younger than I am. She wanted to go to a singles night this evening and asked me to take her as she didn't want to go alone. So I took her and left her an hour or so later being happily chatted up. I'm home alone now and feeling hurt, but I have no reason to be. I knew she wasn't interested in me, so why am !? mainly because I'm alone again having helped someone else find what they were looking for and find their feet again. It's just never me! I'm the one they so often come to when things go wrong, but I'm not the one who finds the happy ever afters. I wonder if I'll maybe one day have even a dream that I find one! Sorry I guess I'm just feeling sorry for myself. I've spent the last few days helping others and I'd mind that, but I need someone to hold and share my feelings with. To love and to share and to be there for each other. Maybe one day, I just wish that day was now! SMB

Hopeful One Sun, Feb 7th 2016 @ 8:06am

Hi SMB- accept the disappointment but don't stop looking. As far as the opposite sex are concerned here is my two penny recipe.Make sure you are well up on the Holy Trinity for men. Dress well . Smell good .(My favourite Aqua Palma. ) Make them laugh. Did I make all that up? No - it was lady friend who told me when I complained about my lack of success to her!

Soulmansblue Sun, Feb 7th 2016 @ 8:22am

Thanks man, but none of the above seem to work. Women just no longer find me attractive. Must be the extra weight that I've put on through illness. I don't like the way I look so how can I expect them to! Yes, I can make them laugh so much that they roll around the floor, smell good [[Blue Stratos]and dress well and many other tricks of the trade. SMB

Lesley Wed, Feb 10th 2016 @ 1:02pm

Wonderful writing, Soulmansblue. I struggle with caring and then feeling as if I am "achieving nothng" by caring. I then remind myself that that is my striving button which likes to work overtime. My nurture button gets trodden on by the high from the striving button. Funny how the striving button doesn't seem to get me anywhere but tiredness and the nurture button gives me energy.

Anonymous Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 10:02am

Hi Norman. This must be a wonderful memory for you. A pure finest moment. I have been staring out of the window for quite some time trying to think of my finest moment and I haven't yet come up with anything. My initial reaction when I read your question what is your finest moment was to cringe and see my past life as a mass of cringeworthy attempts to excel. Oh dear. I did stand up once in front of a group of visiting dignitaries and tell them about an academic course I was in charge of. This was impromptu (well I had been told I would have to do this minutes before they assembled). I was pleased with my speech. But I can remember I was having a good day that day so I guess I would have risen to any challenge. It just so happened that I was faced with one on a good day. So that's it I'm afraid!! It's pity your Rugby moment wasn't captured on video with the crowd cheering! Jul x

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 7:54pm

"cringeworthy?" Says who? Is this the depression talking? It sounds like the real you is quite capable of delivering a great speech at short notice, (before the depression gets to work.) There is something to build on there. I don't think any crowd would have noticed, and a commentator would have said "doing the necessary..."

Mary Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 10:43am

Hmmm. I hope all my finest moments are ahead of me. Gives me something to look forward to.... Realistically, what others see as triumphs I find so easy so cannot appreciate them. And I have far, far more failures..... Probably the things I am most proud of are the wonderful parties I have given where everyone has been fed and entertained and gone home with great memories.I do throw a good party - usually themed and I write murder mystery dinner parties (which will come as no surprise to anyone who regularly reads me). And - coping well in a crisis and emergency. I'm pretty good at that. Anyway - Norman, thanks for making us all think about the positive this morning. Nice one!

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:49am

"all my finest moments are ahead of me" hold that thought Mary!

Terence Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:01am

Lovely story Norman, the score at that moment was:-
Presence of mind 1 – 0 Living in your head
Not that living in your head is always a bad thing. I am very pleased to think that light is shining on your achievements and your humour. I think that my finer moments have been when a plan comes together, the realisation of a vision! I also believe that living happily with the failure of a grand plan is pretty cool x

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:52am

"my finer moments have been when a plan comes together, the realisation of a vision!"
Great! I look forward to the blog!

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 11:56am

There is actually a coda to the story. As it was winter we kicked off early then after the obligatory couple of pints at their clubhouse we set off and stopped at a village pub we had been recommended. As it was 5:30 it was shut. We knocked on the door. Eventually an upstairs window opened and the landlord shouted "we don't open till 7: I'm having my tea." Our captain said, "there's two thirsty rugby teams out here." Landlord: "I'll be right down..."

susan Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 12:01pm

Perhaps my finest moment was when I chose to actually BE here, on the planet, fully and gratefully, rooted in my body for as long as it was given to me. Beyond that, I can't think of a thing, Norman. I enjoyed hearing about yours and others; they all involve being really focussed in a moment of intense mindfulness or revelation of some kind. Thank you -- it's a really interesting question. xx

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:04pm

by choosing to be "here" everything else is a story of daily achievements: celebrate each day

The Gardener Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 5:05pm

Two things - Norman taking me to task on the 'gypsy' issue. Do we have to be politically correct on Moodscope? The other, Anon, blogs being 'used' like a comments wall. Surely, the blog of the day is the catalyst which provokes the comments - usually of great help/relief to the poster - many of whom, one gathers, have serious problems of communication with family, friends or work colleagues. My finest hour? Farcical, of course. It entailed getting a one-legged man with no passport on a plane for Italy. I'd been shepherding a group round East Anglia (looking at sugar been production, of all things). This guy left his passport in the George at Stamford. I tried to bamboozle Heathrow authorities with his driving licence, no go. Lots of hand waving and shouting ensued. then, I think, some high up in Alitalia was contacted (my lot were quite high up) and somehow, we got him away. I think Heathrow saw us as trouble, and wanted us out of the way. I got effusive thanks afterwards as they thought I brought off the coup personally. The one-leg? He had to travel with his group, throw him off, they all stayed.

Bearofliddlebrain Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 5:20pm

Ah TG...know the George in Stamford well...just up the road from where I live! Am confused about gypsies?? Can't see a mention of them so I must assume they appeared on another day?? Do hope you and Mr TG are rubbing along nicely today x x x

Paul Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 5:22pm

Great post Norman
Mine isn't a finest hour it's a true but funny story. About 50 years ago I was 10 watching a game of cricket at school. I did not understand the rules and probably still don't. Anyway our school was against another local school when a lad hit a belter coming towards me I think it was going to be a six when I decided to run on the field and throw the ball back to them. Our school lost thanks to me. And I was never allowed to forget what I did. I thought I was being helpful but everyone else thought different.

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:27pm

Paul, It's great that you have the self-awareness to tell the story against yourself in a lovely self-deprecating way.

Bearofliddlebrain Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 5:25pm

Norman...great story and well told! I was hoping another of your finest moments might be your counting of days abstaining?? Hope you're doing well however many days have passed :)
I have been thinking hard today...think, think,'s taken ages but a coupe of things have sprung to mind: singing at the weddings of family and friends; getting married (and still being married!!) and the birth of my beautiful daughter.....but on the down days it is ve ve hard to bring even these momentous things to mind to keep spirits high!
Loved HO's joke too!
Happy weekend all
Bear hugs x

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:18pm

Bear, I remember you telling us about a day out in London of which you were really fearful, and wanted to run away, but did it anyway and enjoyed yourself. Have you forgotten already? You showed great courage that day!

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:23pm

41 days of phase two today! 97 dry days out of the last 101!

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:29pm

And staying married while depressed is a great achievement: I find that relationships are usually the first things to go and the last to return.

The Gardener Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 6:40pm

Hello bear - confusion - it was following a blog much on anger - and I told a story about one of our staff - and used 'euphemisms' for gypsies - to which Norman objected, thought we were safe on Moodscope. Rubbing along is ?? As long as Mr TG does just as he likes (like nothing) all is well. I am having a panic - everybody says he must move - if he deteriorates more physically I am going to be in real trouble - but he is adamant, just sits - watching him is pure hell - but he likes the new house - and I am actually having some champers because somehow, in five weeks, a brilliant bedroom has appeared by magic and I haven't been further than 20 kms from the house! I loved the George - and the Italians went mad on it.

Bearofliddlebrain Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:19pm

TG...rubbing along = just both of you, doing what you can, each of you...without too much harm to each other! The George is still should have seen it decorated for Christmas...just gorgeous! Glad you are both settling in to yiurnew abode. Ching Ching to the champers....Lurve a liddle pagne but am on a ve ve smart red the evening, still raising a glass to you both x

The Gardener Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:33pm

Thanks bear - here's to you. Eldest son coming overnight Sunday - weather forecast app-all-ing.X

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:38pm

Thanks for everyone who took the trouble to comment. I'm in a strange place at the moment where my creativity is very high but my energy very low. Hence the pattern of writing a few words of reply then resting for ten minutes...

Norman Sat, Feb 6th 2016 @ 8:38pm

Thanks for everyone who took the trouble to comment. I'm in a strange place at the moment where my creativity is very high but my energy very low. Hence the pattern of writing a few words of reply then resting for ten minutes...

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