The important thing is to firmly fix our gaze on our own weaknesses, not run away from them, but to battle them head-on and establish a solid self that nothing can sway. Hardships forge and polish our lives, so that eventually they shine with brilliant fortune and benefit. If left in its raw, unpolished form, even the most magnificent gem will not sparkle. The same applies to our lives.
The flimsy little protestations that mark the front gate of every novel, the solemn statements that any resemblance to real persons living or dead is entirely coincidental, are fraudulent every time. A writer has no other material to make his people from than the people of his experience. . . The only thing the writer can do is to recombine parts, suppress some characterisitics and emphasize others, put two or three people into one fictional character, and pray the real-life prototypes won't sue.
To be diagnosed with cancer was a frightening thing, and my first reaction was sheer panic, but I was really fortunate that the cancer was caught at such an early stage that I didn't need chemo or radiotherapy. But I know that cancer is a chronic condition, and once you've had it, you're on the list, because it can come back.