What do you like or dislike about the ending of The Hours?

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accessteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There is a sense in which the ending of this tremendous novel brings with it a very satisfying resolution. Clarissa comes to forgive both Laura and herself. Laura is forgiven for abandoning Richard as a child, and Clarissa forgives herself for living the kind of life that she follows. Clarissa comes to understand that Laura has had a very difficult life and has her own reasons for the decisions she has made. Spurred on by this act of forgiveness, Clarissa also finds it within her to forgive herself, and she has a kind of epiphany at the end when she realises that life can only be lived each moment at a time, and that focusing on the individual hours or the units of time can bring great satisfaction. 

For me, therefore, I found the ending very satisfying, as the epiphany that Clarissa experiences is one that has so much to say for all of us and communicates the message of the novel very well. At the end of the day, we cannot look at life in its entirety without becoming depressed and saddened. Only by focusing on the individual hours can we enjoy life and make it have sense and purpose. This I think is a message that is valuable for all of us.