“Strange things happened near boundaries.” James Gleick, Chaos
When you attempt to reach a new level of knowledge, self-awareness, empowerment, creativity, and freedom from past enslavements, addictions, and entanglements, you are very likely to encounter threshold guardians, which may take the form of sabotaging characters (within or without) or other adversaries and adversities that test your will, perseverance, and worthiness to advance to the next level.
I have often encountered threshold guardians at the start of a valuable journey or life change. I used to regard these encounters as setbacks or hardships, but now I recognize threshold guardians as signs that I am on the right track.
When threshold guardians appear, it is a sign that there is treasure beyond the threshold. Summon your will to keep following the path with heart.
See Threshold Guardians for a discussion of this archetype and examples from popular culture and classical myths.
In the epilogue of my sci-fi epic, Parallel Journeys, I describe a series of improbable mishaps during a road trip that had me wondering if my threshold guardian interpretation would hold up. It did, and it exemplified the principle that the bigger the dragon, the larger the pearl of great price it guards. Parallel Journeys, can be read free on this site. If you prefer Audible, Kindle or physical versions, those are all available on Amazon.