Ready Room- Onwards and Upwards~Dr. Mariah Grayson, Chief of Psychiatry

Posted Sept. 29, 2023, 8:19 p.m. by Lieutenant Dr. Mariah Lee Grayson (Chief of Psychiatry) (Lori Miller)

Posted by Captain Dira Myqian (Commanding Officer) in Ready Room- Onwards and Upwards~Dr. Mariah Grayson, Chief of Psychiatry

Posted by Lieutenant Dr. Mariah Lee Grayson (Chief of Psychiatry) in Ready Room- Onwards and Upwards~Dr. Mariah Grayson, Chief of Psychiatry

Posted by Captain Dira Myqian (Commanding Officer) in Ready Room- Onwards and Upwards~Dr. Mariah Grayson, Chief of Psychiatry
Posted by… suppressed (6) by the Post Ghost! 👻


“That’s all any of us can do,” Mariah agreed with a nod, “and I don’t take any of what you’re saying or feeling as a personal slight. You don’t need my permission and I don’t mean it in this way, but you’re allowed to feel whatever you feel about all of this. The command uniform doesn’t give you super powers,” she added with a grin. She paused then, considering whether she should say more. “I’m aware several crewmembers are dealing with the impact of not so distant traumas. I don’t know all the details for everyone as out of respect for confidentiality, I left that to individual therapists, but I’ll bring myself up to speed and make a point to reach out.”

~Dr. Mariah Grayson, COP

Dira gritted her jaw ever so slightly, even as she nodded and inhaled deeply to relax her body. Did the comment feel directed at her? Absolutely. Though there were others on the list as well, so it wasn’t just her. But still. She let her gaze drift past Mariah’s head and across her office to the windows. The inky darkness of space drew her in as it always did for a brief moment before she gathered herself and reached into a desk drawer. “I am fortunate that you said yes, or else I wouldn’t get to do this. See, there are a few great joys as a captain and this is one of them,” she said, pushing her chair back and rising to her feet, and gestured for Marirtah to do the same. “Attention, Lieutenant,” she ordered.

Letting go entirely of any previous tension, Dira gave a warm smile and took a step towards Mariah. She opened the box and pulled out a pip. “Lieutenant Junior Grade Mariah Grayson, you are hereby promoted to the rank of full Lieutenant with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities therein.” She reached over and pulled the hollow pip off Mariah’s collar and replaced it a solid one, before offering her hand. “Congratulations, Lieutenant!”

Captain Myqian, CO

Mariah inwardly winced as she wondered if her words came across more pointedly than she intended. It was hard to walk this particular line at this particular moment but she hoped her message of support was received.

As for the events that unfolded next, surreal was the only word to describe them. Clearly not used to being the center of attention, Mariah awkwardly came to attention as directed and allowed herself to smile when she felt the pip become affixed to her collar. She should have anticipated this - not because of anything she had done, but because it would be highly unusual for a department chief to remain a Lieutenant Junior Grade. Mariah was still deciding whether she was worthy of it, but she resolved to earn it from this point forward. “Thank you, Captain,” replied Grayson, offering a genuine and firm handshake. “I will do all I can to be worthy of your faith in me.”

~Dr. Mariah Grayson, Chief of Psychiatry

Myqian shook her hand with a smile. “I have every confidence in you, Lieutenant.” Inwardly, she was thrilled to have surprised Grayson. There was just something joyful about being able to promote someone, and if they hadn’t seen it coming and it was a positive thing? Priceless.

She gestured for Mariah to take her seat. “Now that that is all official, do you have any questions for me about expectations, the job itself, other issues?” She figured they might as well go over anything now while they had the opportunity.

Captain Myqian, CO

Mariah sat and used the time to gather her thoughts. She didn’t want to sound ignorant or naive, considering she had been with the department for awhile and she had just been promoted to the department’s leadership role, but she genuinely wanted to hear the Captain’s perspective to what was a critical but fundamental question. Until now, she had only ever heard the perspective of others in the role she had just been given. “I don’t mean to sound daft, Captain, but I’m genuinely interested to hear what your expectations are for me and the psychiatry department in terms of overall duties. Naturally, I understand we are to see to the mental health needs of patients and staff alike, but is it fair to say you would also like me to act as a command and diplomatic advisor should the need arise as well?”

~Dr. Mariah Grayson, CoP

Dira nodded. “Absolutely. Even though myself and Commander Sinclair both come from mental health backgrounds, we’re going to be focused on the big picture, the running of the ship, the larger stakes in a crisis. What you can provide are the nuances we might forget or might help refine the decisions we ultimately have to make. I also want you to come to us if there are issues with the crew that need our attention. I’m not going to ask you to break confidentiality unless you believe that a particular crew member’s capacity to serve has been compromised, but this is a busy crew with a large responsibility. For many they are in a potentially high stress job and I expect you and the whole psychiatry department to not only be ready to handle that, but ensure we have tackling things from a preventative perspective.” These were all thins she had expected of herself when she ran a department and it still felt very relevant, even if the scale was much larger on a specialized ship like the Ogawa.

Captain Myqian, CO


Mariah nodded. All of this was in line with her thoughts, but she appreciated hearing it from the Captain herself. Because members of the command team had mental health backgrounds themselves, she wanted to make sure she was complementing their efforts. At the same time, she also understood that having a particular background didn’t mean there wouldn’t be blind spots. No one was perfect, after all, and being in command meant taking on a variety of perspectives that weren’t necessarily second nature. “Navigating the dual responsibilities of attending to the mental health needs of the medical staff while also working alongside them has always been a tough line to walk, but not impossible. Ultimately, we all have the same goal of helping people who need us,” Mariah said with a smile.

~Dr. Mariah Grayson, CoP

“Absolutely. And on this ship, with such a specialized crew, we have the luxury of a vast array of expertise we can utilize. We can try out things that we might not be able to elsewhere, and take actions that might seem riskier in a different setting, but here are quite safe.”

Dira folded her arms on her desk and leaned forward. “Obviously, you’ll attend all our senior staff meetings, but the senior health care staff all meet regularly. I also would like to talk frequently about where the crew is at. And, in addition to the contributions from their department heads, you and Commander Sinclair will handle performance reviews. Promotions, serious disciplinary issues, things like that, the three of us will discuss.” She let out a breath. “I’m trying to think if there is anything else I need to remember.”

Captain Myqian, CO

Mariah nodded as the Captain continued to detail Mariah’s new responsibilities. It was a lot to process in the moment but not unexpected. “No worries, Captain. If you Ithink of anything else, I’m sure you’ll know where to find me. I’m looking forward to getting to know more people, particularly Commander Sinclair. I also appreciate the variety this new job will present…I think I’ll find myself challenged in new ways.”

~Dr. Mariah Grayson, CoP

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