Thursday, September 15, 2005

Like Being a Junkie

I have a good freelance job right now, working against a deadline with some creative people. It's all covered by an NDA (a non-disclosure agreement, I am learning contractor jargon) and the hours are very long. It's tough, interesting stuff. I get up, I work, I go to bed. Part of that is because I still get tired. I'm told that chemo effects like fatigue can plague people for a couple of years. Most of the time I do fine, but other people on the project routinely pull fourteen hours. If I do that, as I did yesterday, I pay today with a kind of physical depletion.

But it turns out that having a realy involving interesting job like this is a lot like having Hodgkins in that it has become pretty much my whole life. From the end of November until sometime in June, all I could think about was cancer cancer cancer. Now all I can think about is job job job. This job, in fact, finishes up just about the time that last year I was diagnosed. When I was in college and I took psychology, one of the theories of drug addiction was that, say, being a heroine addict simplified your life down to feeding your habit. Hodgkins simplified my life in one direction. The project has simplified it in another.

Which means that Nov. 2004 to Nov. 2005 is among the most intense twelve years of my life. Up there with the year in China--which also had the strange combination of being a little like a jail sentence and a little like the most mind-stretching book or class I've ever taken. Up there with the first year I lived in New York City. I was 23 and in some ways it was the year I became an adult.

So I apologize for not posting more. I hope to post the state of my hair (crewcut) complete with pictures, very soon.


Blogger Christopher Barzak said...

Keep truckin yo!

And I love a woman with a crewcut. It's hot. And that ain't no lie.

September 16, 2005 4:12 PM  
Blogger David Moles said...

Hooray! I was starting to worry that it was something we said.

September 18, 2005 12:12 PM  
Blogger Greg van Eekhout said...

If this place becomes less an online diary than a place to collect occasional post cards from Maureen, I can live with that, so long as she stays healthy and happily engaged in rewarding work.

September 18, 2005 6:32 PM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

David, I love your picture.

I'd love to post more, really I would. But the days are short and the hours are long, at least until about thanksgiving.

September 19, 2005 8:55 AM  
Blogger Gregory Feeley said...

"Job job job" does beat "Cancer cancer cancer." Pays better, too.

September 19, 2005 4:09 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

I saw the crewcut. It looked good.

September 22, 2005 4:28 PM  
Blogger Kaycee said...

You go ahead and work for awhile. I thank you for all the previous entries- I was diagnosed last week and came across your blog, which has given me a lot of answers and a lot to laugh about, which is just as important.

September 27, 2005 5:20 PM  
Anonymous Ah Clem said...

Looks like the spammers have discovered your blog. It's funny how some of the pitches involve working at home, dogs, and cancer. Scary stuff.

It's just as well you don't have time for your blog anymore. I've archived all of it. It might be time to lock it down.


October 03, 2005 4:34 PM  
Blogger SquidgePa said...


She could turn on 'word verification' under the comments setting. I think that will stop most comment spambots.


October 04, 2005 9:20 AM  
Blogger Gregory Feeley said...

As the fleas of live commenters leave this blog's cooling body, the carrion-feeding spambots move in. Soon they have covered it in a seething mass of purulent spam.

Life in the electronic wild isn't pretty.

October 06, 2005 4:11 PM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Well, that was horrific. So I deleted all the spam and put word verification on. Hopefully come the end of November when I have a life, I can actually post something.

October 06, 2005 10:45 PM  
Blogger Madeleine Robins said...

I'm happy to have word of crewcuts, jobs, and any other Maureen-matters.

I had to add word verification to my blog too, after a particularly nasty spate of spam invasion (nothing like ten strangers in a row telling you how much they love your blog and wouldn't you love to come see their terrific prices for Cialis).

October 13, 2005 11:36 AM  
Blogger Christopher Barzak said...

Crap, how long is it gonna take before you blog again??? Another month??

October 27, 2005 10:41 PM  
Anonymous tom said...

Thank you, very interesting!

December 26, 2005 8:42 AM  

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