In Ithaca, Odysseus and his wife, Penelope, had just delivered their first born child, and the first born heir to be the future king. They both decided to name him Telemachus.
The day Telemachus was born, Odysseus being the king was asked to sail to Troy to fight in the Trojan war, and leave his family behind until he was able to get back. Odysseus did not want to go because he knew it would take him too long to sail home to see his family again.
Crossing the Threshold
The fear of being gone too long away from his wife and newborn son struck and so he was telling himself not to go. He knew the sail there and back would be longer than he thinks.
Odysseus knew however that as part of the job for being king, he should go along with his men to fight in battle. When he decided to go, the Goddess of wisdom, craft, and war, Athena came to him and told him that she would be with him the whole way throughout his journey.
After fighting in the Trojan war, Odysseus sailed away home, however the gods were mad that Odysseus thought he could do everything by himself with no help, so they teamed up and tried to keep him and his men from reaching home.
As Odysseus and his men sailed home, they encountered a mass amount of obstacles such as the Sirens, Charybdis, Scylla, a cyclopes named Polyphemus, and they also found many gods and goddesses such as Circe and Calypso that attempted to make him and his men stay on their island and never want to leave.