This Mother's Day we are celebrating all RAF mums. In this guest blog Catherine Argent, tells us why her mum has been such an inspiration to her over the years!
I am the Deputy Manager at the RAF Benevolent Fund's respite care home facility, Princess Marina House in West Sussex. I have worked here for more than 25 years and love that each day I get to do my bit to support the RAF family.
My dad, Group Captain Eric Goodman OBE served in the RAF for 39 years in the medical branch and then he too worked at Princess Marina House following his service career as the General Manager.
Looking back, I realise how difficult it must have been for my mother at times, always following Dad around as he was posted to various places across the world. She gave up a life of her own to allow Dad to pursue his and was very selfless.
I will never forget during the Cyprus uprising in 1974, when I was just 10 we were living in Limassol and the Turkish Army invaded our town. At the time, Dad was on the base at RAF Episkopi whilst my mother and I were unable to leave our home as the Greeks and Turks fought outside.
She kept me safe and now as an adult I realise how terrifying it must have been for her, but she never let it show. Later, we were evacuated to a shared house on the base for two weeks until we were flown home to England leaving Dad behind in Cyprus. Our home was ransacked and we lost everything but she never let her fear show. She really is my hero!
She's taught me so many valuable things throughout the years but most of all to work hard and to be a good wife and mother.
Last year my mother sadly suffered a heart attack which resulted in a triple heart bypass. After her operation, she spent time at Princess Marina House for some much-needed respite. The amazing staff were on hand to ensure she was looked after and received round the clock care.
This Mother's Day we are having a big Sunday lunch with my mum, husband, five children, their partners and our first grandchild.
By Catherine Argent