>>>"any suggestions for ways to comfort her?"
This responce may be to late but I'm posting it anyway, for the general good of humanity.
If I sound harsh please excuse, it's not necessarily directed at you but at modern American society or lack there of.
Fuck this shit of "I've got work" or "I've got school" or any other preceived societal importance. This is the biggest load of bullshit America (sorry, the United States) has produced. The idea that nothing is more important than work or school, what fucking bullshit!
The person you care about is going through one of the most tramatic expereinces in life. Get your typical american goal minded, success oriented ass out of the school building and to where ever she is. SHE NEEDS YOU!
Tell your teachers whats going on and "Sorry but I gotta go. This is one of those thing thats beyond my control." If your teachers say no, then you deal with the consequences. Life isn't fair, but that doesn't excuss you from doing whats right. And, like it or not you know what the right thing is, so quit trying to find a way out of it, like corprate american wants you to do.
As far as your teachers, when you get back, if they're giving you to much shit, take it up with the dean, the headmaster or any governing board over them. If nothing else at least they'll have to take time to answer. The fuckheads.
Like I said, this isn't all directed at you. I don't know all the factors involved. All I know is, I have to go through this several times a year with my boss, because work always, always take second place to humanity! At least in my book.
The bastard (my boss) actually told a co-worker that he didn't think it was the best time to take off, the co-worker's aunt died, so the dumb shit co-worker didn't go. What a stupid ass, bet his family thinks a lot of him...and I'll guarantee the boss doesn't even remember it. Do like I do, don't ask to get off for whatever, you tell them your leaving for whatever, be it someone in the hospital or in the funeral home.
Don't mean to flame on you but I see this as a continuing trend in U.S. society and it just makes me sick. I guess, what the say is true, americans value the dollar more than human life.
Sorry, but this is just wrong.
If it's simply that you can't afford it. Then I feel for you and pray for ya, that you can find a way to make it work. Again I'm just assuming but you'll be suprised what you can do without. I just hope you can find away to be there with her. She really does need you. If money is still holding you back do the best you can and no one can ask anymore and you have my respect.
Best Wishes for you and your loved ones.
There is no punishment. There is no reward. There are only consequences.