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Find the Grace (Tag Sair)

Posted Sept. 27, 2021, 5:16 p.m. by Civilian Sair Songz (Counselor) (Lindsay Bayes)

Posted by Civilian Revna Freya McKenzie (Diplomatic Attache) in Find the Grace (Tag Sair)

Posted by Civilian Sair Songz (Counselor) in Find the Grace (Tag Sair)

Posted by Civilian Revna Freya McKenzie (Diplomatic Attache) in Find the Grace (Tag Sair)
Posted by… suppressed (2) by the Post Ghost! 👻

(snip)

Revna sipped at the drink and then stared into it, almost as if looking for answers, but her attention was turned inward. “I don’t remember when they started after the initial incident but they have never really stopped once they started. The nature of my injury…I couldn’t breath…not more than short shallow breaths. Some nights I think the nightmares caused me to loose my breath, to struggle to stop breathing, and startle awake convinced the doctors hadn’t been able to save me. Others I think it was the other way around. Our bodies tend to deepen and lengthen our breaths as we sleep, and I could not.” Remembering these details obviously distressed Revna but she didn’t shy away from them either. She also knew this was not an answer to the question Sair had asked. She was simply processing out loud, allowing Sair to follow along as it were, as she tried to pin point when it started.

Revna breathed in and there was a hitch and the anticipation of pain, but there was none, and then she breathed deeper. “I think it started after my surgery six months ago. Before there was no way to really…feel, emotionally, the process of dealing with it. I was forced to be calm and serene about it because strong emotions have physical reactions, and I couldn’t breathe, and if I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t do anything but focus on trying to get air.” She blew out a shaky breath and closed her eyes, tears slipping out, and she let them. They were necessary and welcome after so long.

There were many approaches to dealing with post-traumatic symptoms, but until Sair knew Revna better, she wouldn’t know which was the best approach. A previous case history didn’t mean much necessarily because just because what one therapist did worked, didn’t necessarily mean it would work for Sair to implement

“I…I think the first time I knew something had triggered me was when my sister left the Centurion and I had to stay.”

Revna McKenzie

Sair nodded slowly. “Tell me more,” she said simply.

~Sair Songz, CNS

“When Cpt. Jameson had me transferred to Atlantis he arranged for my twin to come aboard as well. Atlantis needed a new teacher, and well, Runa is the best teacher in Federation space.” Revna was very proud of her sister and it showed. “She travelled with me back to Centurion for the surgery and stayed for awhile, but she had to go back, while I stayed. She was there for everything, she stayed in my quarters, on Atlantis, most nights. We’ve always been really close, she’s always been there for the really important things. I was feeling really lost with her leaving. Not having her there to....” several things coalesced together and Revna had a revelation…She set her cup down and pulled a necklace out from under her shirt and stared at it. “No…it started about two weeks after my surgery…but the night terror wasn’t about the attack…related, but not about that…” She blew out a breath, her cheeks puffing out, “How spiritual are you, Sair?”

Revna McKenzie

This was a hard question for a lot of reasons, the least of which being that every therapist had to decide how much to share with their patients about themselves. Some abjured it, while others felt that their patients responded better if there was an element of similitude that forged a connection. Sair had realized quickly after boarding the Manhattan that how she had been as a therapist on Kobliad was going to be rather different than out here, but what the exact balance was she was still was figuring out.

She gestured to the tree sculpture standing proudly by her door. “The mika tree represents a moral duty to serve my society, but for me it goes deeper than that. I believe we are all fundamentally connected and nothing I’ve encountered as a being in space leads me to believe this less. So while I don’t have strong opinions on creators or anything like that I can accept a level of mystery in my life that I don’t feel the need to analyze and explain.”

~Sair Songz, CNS

Revna nodded, “I ask because I know sometimes, for those who are not, it is difficult to relate, to understand, the significance of a spiritual event for someone else. I could argue all day long that what happened…those first night mares, are reflections of the stress and trauma related to my injury, and degrading health, and surgery. But for me it was a…level of mystery that I do not want analyzed or explained.” Revna uncurled from her position on the couch, she leaned back, closed her eyes…”Two weeks after my surgery, Cpt Jameson and my sister, Runa, came to my room. I was struggling, with a lot of things. I should have had the surgery months before, but I had waited, almost until it was too late. I…well, Jameson had been holding on to a message for me, since I was a junior officer. It had been sent to me, but I always refused to listen to it. When I was 16, my fiance, Shauwn, died in the Breen attack of Earth. The message was found in his flight recorder and sent to his family. They sent it to me. I never listened to it until then.”

Slowly Revna shared the contents of that message with Sair…

“Computer begin recording….Revna, baby, I’m not going to make it.” A testament to the skill of the pilot he continued to fly, evade, and shoot as he spoke. “Rev, I know you. You’ll mourn me, and I really hope you do. I hope that I meant so much to you that you never forget me, that I live on in your memory. But I do not want you to live your life with a dead man. I want you to mourn, scream your rage to heavens, Babe, but don’t live with death. And don’t join Star Fleet. I don’t regret it, but it wasn’t your dream, it was mine. You need to find your dream, a new one, and live it, let it fill your life with light and laughter and struggle, but live honey.” The fighter rocked, sparks flying, plasma conduits venting inside the cabin. “I love you Revna Freya Edman, don’t ever forget that.” The ship rocked again, alarms and explosions indicated an engine explosion and the computer “Life support failure in 30 seconds.” “Revna, send a Valkyrie for me, okay.” And the pilot pulled a knife from his boot, aimed the fighter at an engine nacelle of a Breen ship….and then the whole program disappeared in a flash of light, smoke, and the scream of metal tearing itself apart.

“When I was attacked, floating unconscious, unaware, I saw Shauwn, young, healthy, alive, unharmed, and angry at me. He told me that he was proud of what I had accomplished, but he was disappointed I gave up my dreams for his, and was trying to live with a dead man all those years. That … ” Revna sighed, some of it was too personal, just yet, to give voice to. “In…in that moment, the doctors fighting for my life, my lungs ripped to shreds, all I wanted was to go let go and go with him. He told me I couldn’t stay there with him and I had to go back. That someone was waiting for me. And he disappeared, he walked away from me, as it were.” Revna picked up her drink again and sipped it, letting the warmth spread through her. “After seeing his message, the what-ifs, the…fact I had dishonored his memory, that I had risked never finding the greatest gift the gods had given me, became the topic of many nightmare’s for almost two weeks before the subsided. I accepted it as part of the process, working through the trauma and the subconscious. But they began to get worse again when Runa left.”

Revna McKenzie

“Do you think he was right? About Starfleet, I mean,” Sair said, quietly moved by the story. She wasn’t expressionless and detached as some counsellors were, but nor was she overly invested. She was, after all, a neutral outsider offering a different perspective.

~Sair Songz, CNS


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