Counselor - Check In

Posted Aug. 3, 2020, 3:16 p.m. by Commander Garinder'Jen th'Jir (Executive Officer) (Gene Gibbs)

Posted by Lieutenant Revna Edman (Counselor) in Counselor - Check In

Posted by Commander Garinder’Jen th’Jir (Executive Officer) in Counselor - Check In

Posted by Lieutenant Revna Edman (Counselor) in Counselor - Check In
Posted by… suppressed (7) by the Post Ghost! 👻
Jen departed, noting that he really should block off his exercise time in the calendar lest it get interrupted by such things as .. this. However, he could not fault the counselor or the computer for logging the meeting when it did. He would simply have to do his run later. He had been finding an appropriate route around the saucer section, in that doing X laps will render a right distance. Jen did not like exercising thus in the holodeck. Unless one was mimicking where one was going to be stationed to and operating in, running on a sunset white sand beach was not conducive to the right mindset. This was training, not a walk in the park.

Speaking of that .. he reached the Counselor’s office and buzzed.
- Jen, XO

Revna heard the chime and got up and walked over to the door. “Ah, Commander th’Jir. Please come in.” Upon entering the office it was very subdued. The harsh grays and blues that came standard were replaced by earth tones of browns, bronzes, greens, yellows, oranges, and deep reds. There were several areas to sit, couches, chairs, floor pillows. There didn’t appear to be a desk anywhere. The shelves were filled with pieces of art and memorabilia that honored her heritage. The pictures were a mix of landscapes and abstracts, carefully placed around the room so as not to clash with each other. The shelves also included an array of different objects, from singing bowls, to art supplies, to mandalas. There was also a computer interface to allow patients to choose the background noise of their choice.

Jen entered slowly, taking the room in. He wasn’t fond of the colors, preferring whites, greys and blues. Seating wasn’t an issue; indeed they could handle a whole group therapy session. He moved over to a shelf and looked at the items with interest. “Are these yours?” he asked, wondering if they were her creations.

Revna nodded, “Yes Sir they are. The middle shelves are all from my home. The rest I acquired on my time serving, or got simply because. You’re welcome to take them down.” Revna knew this particular meeting was as much about the Cmdr getting his evaluation done as it was for him to take measure of the new counselor.

The items did not look to have a theme as much as were set up from someone who liked this and that. As much as Jen liked ‘themes’ one walk through an art studio or curio shop and one would be cured of that sense of ‘what should be’. Despite the invitation he didn’t reach for anything at first.

“I’m Lt. Revna Edman, please have a seat. Would you like something to drink?“ Revna walked over to replicator. She was pleasantly relieved to see the XO show up so soon for an appt. She’d only sent the message a short time ago. Leading by example, and she approved. She wasn’t sure why command made these things mandatory. After particularly difficult missions, personal mental crisis, etc Revna understood. Revna felt that a short test with the computer or a brief conversation was really all that was needed to determine if an individual under normal circumstances was fit for duty.
Lt. Edman, Counselor

Jen didn’t immediately move to a seat, but did turn to answer her. “No, thank you,” he said. “I ate earlier.” Convention would suggest him to have something to make it more informal. While Jen respected ritual very much, in this case it was a chat and not necessary. “I admire your initiative in seeking out those who are ..” he smiled before turning back to inspect a mandala. “.. delinquent.”
- Jen

Revna chuckled, “Yes well, it’s still early. We shall see how successful I am. From the records Rinker sent to me the crew can be rather…” she had words, but decided to err on the side of politeness, “stubborn. I’ve never understood how command staff can face the things they do, but are afraid of me and a little chat.” She grinned. “I appreciate your own promptness.” She moved to a seat. If Jen wanted to take down the mandala or anything else she had a “for all” policy. “That particular mandala came from Tibet. I made a trip there when I was in college. I got to watch the monks create one from colored sand, and then destroy it.” she smiled at the memory and picked a small vial up from her desk and held it up. It was filled with a swirling mess of colored sand. “They gave each of us a small part of it as a blessing.”

LT. Endman, Counselor

“A physical test, or one that is more objectively judged by themselves is easier to take than the uncertainty of saying the wrong thing to a counselor and find themselves in a remedial class of this or that. It is like answering all the questions right on a test but failing the ‘temperature’ test at the end that you can’t control.” As she mentioned the mandala Jen reached for it and gently picked it up, looking at the detail in it. His head swiveled about at the mention of it being destroyed. “What? Why destroy their work of art? Did the monk not like it? Was it flawed?” Then, he added. “It is creatively made. What ‘is’ a mandala?”
- Jen, XO

Revna smiled, “A mandala is a picture and it can be made in many ways. It is usually symmetrical. The process of creating it is to bring peace and focus to the mind. This one,” she nods towards the one he has picked up, “is a puzzle. The pieces come out in a way you don’t quite expect. And so you find the pattern to return it to that form. If you do it without the board, you can make an endless number of mandalas, fit to whatever design you choose.” She places the little vial back on her desk. “The Tibetan monks believe nothing is permenant. Life, Earth, the Universe is always changing. So they create the mandala, and they enjoy it, the revel in the beauty, maybe for days,a and then when the time comes, they destroy it. It’s actually a very beautiful process. They believe the creating of the mandala is a holy experience. So they give the sand of the mandala as a blessing to others. What once was, will always be, just in a different form.”

“They are a people of ritual and discipline,” he concluded, not without a tone of respect. He still couldn’t quite understand the destruction. He had seen a great deal of destruction. It was easy to destroy. It was not so easy to build. But to create a beautiful thing and then destroy it precipitately was against his values. “It is a difficult thing to imagine, destroying it. I would rather it be left to be enjoyed. But then I am not a Tibetan monk.”

“There are many that are permanent pieces within the temples. But the monks believe that nothing is forever, that life is transient and to be truly at peace we must let go of our physical possessions. I’m not sure I agree with them, but their work is inspiring,” Revna added. She’d been devastated when she watched them destroy the mandala. She had a picture of it somewhere that she had managed to take before they destroyed it.

He recalled, on Andor, that there were a group that was simply called the Cloister. They were to him hermits who proclaimed the purging of the mind and spirit, mainly through purging of one’s past and possessions. Jen could never understand them and felt they were simply escaping from reality.

Revna considered his words, “Well then would you prefer me to put the cortical recorders on and we sit down at the desk for a more physical test than a conversation? Though I’ve never seen the need to send someone to a ‘class.’ They aren’t effective unless the person wants to be there.”

Lt. Edman, Counselor

His thought must not have gone across properly. Frowning he tried a different tack. “If you run a three mile course under your requisite time you know you have passed.” Glancing at her again before putting the mandala back on the shelf he said, “Sometimes in a conversation you don’t know quite how it has gone.” Jen shifted his attention and moved to one of the chairs and sat, leaning forward, elbows on knees. “What do you look for? What triggers your antennae?”
- Jen

Revna sat down, crossed her legs at the ankles and leaned back in her chair. “Well now, Cmdr, that is a difficult question to answer because there is no straight forward answer. Before I was assigned here, I worked on the Centurion, a hospital ship. I worked with trauma patients, and what I would look for with them, is not what I would look for here. Here I would look for physical signs or even verbal ones that are divergent from your normal behavior. These changes in behavior can be brought on by significant events in your life. You can perceive them as positive or negative. The changes can be examined the same way. My job is to help you see the change in your patterns or behavior and let you decide if you like them or not, and if they need to remain or not. My job is then to help you figure out how to go about that.” Revna paused letting that sink in. So many people saw counselor’s as interfering and out to dissect you. When really an emotional issue was very similar to going to the doctor for a chronic physical pain. Did you need treatment or not and if so what kind?

“What kind of patients did you see?” he asked. “Where was that ship stationed?”

“Patients suffering from severe mental trauma. Usually they had a great degree of physical trauma as well, but not always. We went where ever there were casualties. Honestly they all run together now. We never stayed long. We got everyone we could and moved on to the next location,” Revna said. It wasn’t the places she remembered it was the patients and the staff, the people.

That sounded like a rote reply to get past it and move on. “Sounds like a more mobile MASH unit.” It was a statement rather than a question. It sure sounded like that

“Today however, what would attract my notice, would be obvious signs of extreme anger, physically lashing out at things, anger expressed towards me or another person, that through your own words would indicate they are not really the problem. If you told me you wanted to harm yourself or someone else on this ship. But really I would have to know you, as a person, before I could make any determination about that state of your mind. And that is what today is about, getting to know each other, how we work, how we help each other at our jobs, and how best to help the crew.”

Lt. Edman, Counselor

“Then I must be a very interesting case for you then,” Jen said with a hint of a smile. “After all, I am an Andorian whose race has a leaning toward battle as a way of resolving conflict, and in speaking of change, I am again a case study, having come from an intensive combat marine role to a naval role that is significantly different.”
- jen

Revna shook her head, “there are many species who resolve conflict using battle. The question then becomes is your choice for using aggressive techniques in excess of your culture and society. Assuming you were raised that way to begin with.” Revna thought about that. “Combat Marine to navy. Certainly a change. Why?”
Lt Edman, Counselor

“Maybe there are simply more people pushing for a fight.” His memory went back to his schools. For a time he was the brunt of many a battle. For a time he took the battle to them just to get that out of the way. In that way he would have fit into her ‘excess’ category. However, at least in his mind he could justify it. But would an independent judge? “Not my choice,” he answered to her last question.

“They are needing better discipline,” Cologne said to him.
“There are better people to train them. Academy people. Training bases,” Jen countered.
“They go into war zones. You’ve lived there. They need that. Look. you are rebadging to Starfleet but there are 600 marines and birds under you. All surveys show that they have lost initiative. You can bring that back to them. And this comes from Command. It’s an order, even if it was a request from me.”

“I was supposed to help the Marines on board the Chimera to get back up to a better combat preparedness. There may be other reasons but that was what they told me. They were right, and the command staff who were Navy didn’t really understand the Marines. I was to be a bridge there. And, when that ended they transferred me here.” His ‘here’ was sharper than he intended.
- Jen, XO

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