Perhaps we were optimistic with the Torah's description of No'ach and G-d's "feelings" about him. But the generations degenerated from there - with occasional bright spots, as there were in the first ten generations. Those shining individuals were not enough to save the world, until Avraham Avinu arrives on the scene and reintroduces belief in One G-d. Yet his life was not a bed of roses and even the wonderful prophecies and promises were tainted by the image of oppression for a soon to come generation. Our introduction to Yitzchak is the spiritual high of the Akeida, but life continues with the problems of Yaakov and Eisav. Yaakov himself described his life to Par'o as 147 bad years.
Yosef and the brothers certainly didn't fair so well. And it was only in last week's sedra that we became hopeful and optimistic about their reunion and reconciliation. This week, Yaakov just barely makes it back to Eretz Yisrael, but his children already need Par'o's permission to bring him to rest.
The sedra and the Book of B'reishit end with Yosef dying and his remains being placed in a coffin IN EGYPT. We know he eventually gets back to Eretz Yisrael, as do the People of Israel, but none of it is smooth sailing.
If all this sounds depressing, remember what Rabbi Akiva told his colleagues on Har HaBayit. If the negative prophecies come to pass, we can be certain of the Geula Sh'leima.