This chapter deals with the essence of psychoanalytic work—that is, mourning what was and coming to terms with what will be. Whether patient or therapist, we are all caught in the inexorable progression of time and our growing recognition of its finite nature. The author claims that psychoanalysis is about mourning and the recognition that our time is limited. Within this frame, he suggests that we try to do the best we can—to take hold of every moment and experience life to its fullest. He writes, “Analysis manifests itself as the cure for great expectations. … Some things happen for no good reason, and others for deep and complicated reasons, and getting our minds around that isn't exactly pleasant or satisfying, but becoming reconciled to the truth, as best we can understand it, is what's possible”.
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