So why write? I guess first because I can't not write. Its something I've done all my life -- poetry, essays, short stories. Life makes more sense to me when it's on paper. Dark thoughts and feelings evaporate when released into the ether.
There's more to it, though. I believe that in the grand scheme of things I may be unique but not particularly special. That's not a bad thing. It's just that I'm not a celebrity or political figure or leader of some sort worth noting, and therefore whatever I write may be meaningful only to a very small circle of friends and acquaintances. In addition, I believe that people are fundamentally the same, especially those with similar experiences. I find solace on our commonality, and perhaps my little essays will be a touchstone for someone else, somehow.
Finally, there's a sort of validation in the comments and responses I get. When I hear that something I wrote touched someone, or made her laugh until she cried, I can glimpse for a moment the many strands of of the tapestry that weaves us all together.