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In need of advice

(23 Posts)
Rachmumoftwo Tue 29-Jul-08 09:20:29

I don't know what to do for the best. I posted a while ago about my dad, who is coming to the end of his long battle with cancer.

Since I last visited he has hardly regained conciousness and the end is very near. My dilemma is what to do about the family holiday on Friday. Please don't think I'm heartless but the children are so excited and don't know what is happening with my dad. They are 5 and 6. Do I go, and hope to get a flight home for the funeral if he dies? or cancel the whole thing and he might even still be with us after the two weeks? I am so confused.

I can take or leave the holiday, but my children really deserve it, and I won't be able to afford another one later on, as I spent some money I had saved for this.

Please don't berate me for thinking of the holiday at this time, it isn't more important than my dad, but I am thinking of the girls too.

suzywong Tue 29-Jul-08 09:24:56

go on holiday, it's what your dad would want i.e. for you children to enjoy themselves, don't you think?

soremummy Tue 29-Jul-08 09:26:37

Go, I bet your dad would want you to go. TBH I got a phonecall about my dad taking a bad turn and wason a flight within 2hrs back to Dublin but he had died before I got there (long standing joke in family my dad waited for no one! 10 seconds late and he would drive off in car)

Even if you stay at home who knows when he will go? You might not get to see him in time?

soremummy Tue 29-Jul-08 09:28:28

Baby hit k/b and posted this before I finished. Go see your Dad speak with him tell him you love him and hopew you will see him again when hols are over.

tiggerlovestobounce Tue 29-Jul-08 09:28:42

Horrible dilemma for you. I dont think you are wrong for thinking about this.
How would you feel if he died while you were away?
What do his doctors/ nurses say about how long they expect him to live for?
How long will you be away for? Will you be the one who prganises the funeral?

I hope that you can find a solution to this that you are comfortable with.

SoupKitchen Tue 29-Jul-08 09:37:10

If you are not the one who has to do all the arranging.
I would go, but explain to your Dad what you are doing.

The funeral can be delayed until you get back, as far as I know there is not a time limit, and things could be arranged to coincide with your return.

I am sorry you are having to deal with such difficult decisions

whooosh Tue 29-Jul-08 09:41:36

Go-assuming that you have a DH/DP to stay with the kids if you had to fly back?

As long as you are prepeared that you may not actually be with him when he dies,if it happens suddenly you should go for your girls.

TBH-if he does pass away and you are unable to get there in time,there is little point in coming back,unless the funeral is taking place.

Soupkitchen is right-funerals can wait-there is no time limit.

MummyDoIt Tue 29-Jul-08 09:42:14

I faced a similar dilemma last year. We had a break at Centreparcs booked and Dad died two days before we were due to go. All my family insisted I should still go. My DSs were 3 and 4 at the time and so excited about going. It would have been heartbreaking to disappoint them. Mum had my brother and sister to support her and we live 250 miles away anyway could be of no practical help until the day of the funeral.

Go and see your Dad before you go on your holiday. Tell him you love him and say your good byes just in case he goes while you're away. Even if he isn't conscious or aware, you need to say a proper good bye for your sake. Then go and have a damned good time in his honour. We raised a glass to Dad and thought of him, knowing he'd have wanted the boys to have a good time.

Rachmumoftwo Tue 29-Jul-08 09:44:18

I don't think my stepmum would wait for me. How long to funerals take from passing to being held? I really have no idea and don't feel comfortable asking in RL.

I should be able to get a flight back, it's only Spain. I was thinking I could go back to the holiday afterwards perhaps. The children won't be attending the funeral, they are too little, and DD6 is such an emotional soul (to put it mildly).

Thanks for posting, I am glad you don't think I'm horrible.

whooosh Tue 29-Jul-08 09:52:24

Assuming you are not Jewish (in which case the funeral is meant to be within 24hrs of passing) the "average" length of time is about a week
This does vary thoughout the year due to undrtakers and crematoria staff having holidays but usually about 7-9 days.

Rachmumoftwo Tue 29-Jul-08 09:56:25

Thanks. It gets complicated, as DH is only with us for the first week, while the girls and I are having a fortnight. But we will be with friends.

I have read your posts, and think we should go. I could fly back, and if it is early in the holiday, fly back out.

Would holiday insurance pay for this kind of thing? Or just the one flight maybe?

tiggerlovestobounce Tue 29-Jul-08 09:58:49

I think that your insurance wont pay for this, as it is not unexpected if he dies while you are away.
He might hang on longer than you expect though.

LIZS Tue 29-Jul-08 10:04:32

go . Funerals take at least a week to arrange and could wait until yoru return. If needs be could your dh stay with children and you fly back on his flight ? Insurance would probably cover curtailment, and therefore an earlier return flight, but perhaps not if you were to rejoin them.

SSSandy2 Tue 29-Jul-08 10:14:56

I cancelled our holiday when mum died to go to the funeral. I wish I had been with her when she died of cancer. It would have been nice to hold her hand, be in the hospital with her.

Can't decide for you though, hope you find a solution you will be comfortable with. Sorry to hear about your dad.

RealityGap Tue 29-Jul-08 10:34:16

Firstly I am really sorry that your dad is dying.

Secondly I like most of the other posters don't think you are wrong to be thinking of what to do with your holiday.

Your travel insurance will probably not cover the cost of your flights if your father was terminally ill before you purchased it - unless you told them about this and your premium was weighted for this. But it might be worth calling them and finding out before you depart. Your flight provider might however let you change your flight date in the cirucmstances.

Rachmumoftwo Tue 29-Jul-08 10:38:12

I see your point, but I am from his first family, and get the feeling my stepmum wants it to be her and her boys holding his hand when he goes.

I love my Dad, but it not the same as if it were my mum, who raised me as a single parent. We don't have the same bond. I have said my goodbyes on my last visit, the vicar came and we had Holy Communion, which made my dad happy. He has been very calm and sleepy since then.

My stepmum said it is best not to visit now, as she thinks I should remember him as he was. Part of me agrees, the other part of me thinks she just wants her neat family unit at his bedside. But now is not the time to argue, so I won't.

He could be around for weeks, he has come through so many times when we have thought the end was here. No-one can tell, the doctors and nurses have no idea, deue to the nature of his illness. I am as prepared as I can be, but know that it will still be a shock.

hanaflower Tue 29-Jul-08 10:40:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Elasticwoman Tue 29-Jul-08 22:28:26

Agree with Hana. When my dad died, we were about to go on holiday, and my mum told us to go while she organised the funeral for after we got back, about 2 weeks after he died. It felt odd going on holiday, while my dad was dead but unburied, but it was mum's suggestion and she did the organising.

When my aunt died a few years ago, it was nearly 3 weeks till she was buried, because she died just before Christmas.

It's awkward for you, but if you do go away, and he dies, surely stepmum wouldn't hold the funeral while you're still on holiday, would she?

Rachmumoftwo Wed 30-Jul-08 10:58:57

I don't think that she would wait for me, as she believes that my dad wouldn't mind me not being there. I would feel selfish asking everyone to delay their mourning while I sun myself on holiday, you know. It would be all about me.

I really am stressing about this, I feel so selfish on the one hand, but know I should go, for the sake of my children. Whatever I do will be wrong, won't it?

Elasticwoman Wed 30-Jul-08 11:55:16

"dad wouldn't mind me not being there" - is irrelevant. Funerals are for the mourners. YOU are entitled to be there, as his daughter. People are released from prison in order to be present at a parent's funeral. It's called compassionate leave to attend. Your stepmum should have a little bit of compassion for your feelings. But you can't control what she does. If she won't undertake to delay the funeral, in the event of his death during your holiday, she should at least be prepared to let you know immediately if he dies, so that you can cut your holiday short and come home. Would it be possible to leave the rest of your family on holiday and come home by yourself? Not sure if you have a partner.

Rachmumoftwo Wed 30-Jul-08 16:34:42

That is plan B. I do have a DH, but due to ridiculous work commitments he will only be with us for the first week.

Rachmumoftwo Thu 31-Jul-08 22:14:53

Dad died tonight. We are due to fly out in a few hours. The girls are so excited and happy about the holiday that we are still going to take them away, and worry about whether to cut the holiday short when we know when the funeral will be. We aren't telling them about Dad until after their holiday. I feel kind of numb at the moment, and wish we didn't have this holiday booked, but also feel like we should go, for the children's sake. I know it is what Dad would have wanted.

LIZS Sat 02-Aug-08 09:49:57

I'm so sorry and guess you will have left by now. Hopefully you will at least get part of your holiday.

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