We travel this life following many paths with many crossroads.

At different times for different souls, a particular choice lies in their path. 

When you come to this juncture, you examine the avenue to the left, and the avenue to the right. 

The way to the right seems the easiest to follow, for we can see farthest down the road, it's terrain is familiar, amicable, even amiable. It looks so much like the trail you have been on. It looks like what you expected to see when we started out. There have been some twists and surprise turns, and some rough spots on this journey. But you forged onward, kept in the knowledge that this was the way, and no cost is too great.

It's just that something on this journey seems missing. You can't quite put you finger on it. You've been watching for "what ever it is" for some time. It must be around here somewhere. It's probably just around the next turn.

You assume that it's just your own unreasonable expectations, and that you should be content to see the joy that is there. And that faint emptiness gnawing at your heart is just your own ungratefulness.

(The emptiness is not in your heart.)

You continue to believe that if you work hard enough  that you can make this path be what you want. Forever oblivious to the fact that you cannot do it alone. All those in your party on this trek must have the same expectations. While they may want it in their hearts, they just don't have it within themselves to make it so. It's just not in them.

So onward you travel. The anticipation of finding the answer to that ever increasing gnawing is growing. The answer must surely be close at hand.

You travel for some time. No progress is seen. You find yourself facing the same crossroads. You look at the other path

It's not the right choice. It's just not what you intended. There's too much risk. It's too ripe with tribulation. The growth you might gain from the challenge seems too costly. If you survive, you're better off than you might have hoped. If you can't endure, it will destroy you.

But you still look more carefully at this other route.

This path to the left is such a departure to the course you originally set. It seems like it might be more to your true quality, your requirements, your efficacies. But you long ago set out on the pathway you now follow, ever meaning to see it to the end. This change is just too risky.

Should you continue? The conclusion you journey toward is why you rendered your heart as a token to another. And that is the reason you journey along with them, ever searching for that elusive something.

And out of a lack confidence, strength, knowledge, and of having the experience to change direction after such a long and fruitful journey, it seems fraught with recklessness.

With such determination, you could fail to see that the path you follow brings you to this same crossroads, again, and again, and again. You may not even recognize it. It looks familiar, but that's not where You set out to go. So you continue down out chosen path.

All the while not knowing that perhaps your true destiny lies down a different path.

And in there lies the gnawing that torments from within.