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Mama NHS

Patricia is one of the participants in the production being directed and produced by Jeremy Weller as part of his residency ‘Where it Hurts’. A wide ranging group of individuals have come together to explore personal experiences of accessing NHS services.

Mama NHS by Patrica Jeram

If there ever was a presence
So strong and yet so weak
Strong in your love, care and compassion
And weak in same nature
It would be you Mama NHS

If there ever was a presence
So loved and yet so loathed
Loved and appreciated by most
Loathed and hated by a few
It would be you Mama NHS

From when mum and dad found out about me
To when I was born and took my very first steps
You were always here Mama NHS

And when in childhood freedom
Oblivious of danger I hurt myself
When in adolescent stubbornness
I fell off my bike and cracked my ribs
You were here to nurse me Mama NHS

When in adulthood I felt depressed and confused
When in recklessness I damaged my body
And blamed everyone for their part
You were there Mama NHS

When I cried out for help
And finding none I jumped
Hoping to put an end to the pain
That was no longer a gain
You were there to catch me and patch me Mama NHS

When my pal Jimmy gave up waiting for a new liver, you magically provided one
When my ma broke her hip
You gave a her a new one
What a miracle you are Mama NHS!

But when my pal Amy got breast cancer, you turned her into a statistic and told her she had two years to live. That was insensitive Mama NHS

And when my mate Jamie died from blood cancer
And my aunt Nina died from heart attack
All through no fault of theirs
You stood by and did not save them Mama NHS

When my partner died from a crash
And my sweet little boy lost his wee limbs
Never to play football or cycle again
Why did you not reverse it all Mama NHS?

When my neighbour and his partner wanted children,
You helped them achieve their dream
But when I turned to you to ask for same
You said I was too old Mama NHS

“Is there ever a limit to a mother’s generosity?” I ask you
“Blame the politicians, they took my resources, my power and my love” you moan and groan
“Well I say you’re not fighting hard enough, mama! Every mother fights for her children, young or old! fit or disabled! rich or poor! Fight for your children Mama NHS”

I feel grateful to you Mama but
I also feel sad and disappointed
I feel angry, helpless and powerless
But I trust you to help me because

If there ever was a presence so loving, caring, compassionate, intelligent, creative, powerful, gentle and strong!

It would definitely be you Mama NHS