Struggling with losing my Dad

I’m struggling with losing my Dad who passed on 21st November. He was 89 and living in a care home in Staffordshire, while I live in Aberdeen so I couldn’t see him regularly like my sister and brother who live not far away. He got Covid-19 and although his lungs were recovering it caused a dementia crash and we lost him very quickly after this. His funeral will be on 30th December but I don’t want to take the risk of travelling on a plane in the current climate. It’s going to be so hard not to be able to say goodbye. The last time I saw him was 3 years ago when I was down for my Mum’s funeral.
I’ve been under so much stress as he died a week before we moved house. Also, I didn’t allow myself to grieve properly for my Mum at the time because I was focusing on getting through a major operation to debulk an Acoustic Neuroma, a benign tumour which grows on the main balance, hearing and facial nerve next to the brain. Mum died in the September 3 years ago and I had my op in the December. I didn’t tell either of my parents that I had a brain tumour because of their dementia and I didn’t want to worry them. I feel so awful that I couldn’t be with Mum when she was dying. We were so close and she would’ve been so hurt that I wasn’t there for her. I hadn’t seen her for about 5 years when she passed.
Losing my Dad has triggered all the grief I didn’t allow myself when Mum died. I’d only just moved house a couple of days when she passed too.
My operation left me with some disabilities so I’ve been trying to come to terms with them too. Life just feels very unfair at the moment. I’m really lucky to have such a wonderful partner to take care of me and I know I wouldn’t have got this far without him. How do I cope with all of this though? I don’t feel that ordinary counselling would help.

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Dear Middle-chip,

You have had a few very difficult years and I can fully understand that you are struggling at the moment. I know from experience how hard it is to lose both your parents within a few years especially when you do not live near to them. Don’t be too hard on yourself. I am sure your parents knew that you loved them, and I hope that your brother and sister will understand that you feel it is not safe to travel at the moment.
Many funeral directors are providing video links to funeral services. This year, I ‘attended’ two services, one for my cousin in the States and one for one my best friend in New Zealand, and I found that very helpful because even though I could not be there in person, it felt like I was there. Hopefully you will be able to take part in your dad’s funeral in that way, and maybe something can be read out on your behalf?
It is great that you have a supportive partner and that you are not alone. If you do feel you could do with more help, why not try some bereavement counseling with Sue Ryder or Cruse? Or ask your GP is he can recommend support for you?
Sending you a big virtual hug at this sad and difficult time.

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Thank you very much for your reply. Yes, my siblings fully understand about me not going to his funeral and my sister said straight away that it isn’t safe for me to travel there. I don’t know if it’ll cost any extra for a video link as this wouldn’t have been in the funeral plan originally and I don’t like to think I’d be adding to the stress that my sister is under as she is arranging everything and also struggling to cope. She has asked me for any readings, memories I have or music I’d like and hopefully I can contribute in this way. I am close to my siblings so it will make it easier.
Thank you for the info about the counselling options. I’ll have a think about it. I did have some about a year after losing Mum but I do find it difficult to express myself which makes it harder.

Recently someone recommended counselling to me. They explained that it doesn’t fix you it just helps you to cope. As it’s 2 yrs since I lost my dad I’m not sure how to go about it now, but I would say if you have the chance to try, take it.

P.s. My dad was a few hours journey away from where I work, I couldn’t just go see him every week, it is harder.