((Starbase 118 Ops - Main Sickbay))
Bailey: Hello. ::Her voice was sweet and calm::
DeVeau: Is it worth waking him?
Bailey: If I wake him now he might be able to head back to his room and sleep more there.
DeVeau: I suppose. Maybe?
Bailey: Either way I can see from here that the IV drip had finished.
Slowly, Sheila moved closer to Ashley, careful with her crutches. Once close enough she placed a gentle hand on his shoulder fully prepared for him to startle. Whatever his response turned out to be she stayed gentle, calm like he would for his own patients. And too stepping back for a moment she gave him a minute to sit up as well as wake up.
And startle he did, jerking up slightly as she removed her hand. After a sharp intake of breath he calmed down, then flinched. The headache was still there, if somewhat more muted. He sat up more cognizant than he had been the hour before thanks to the fluids and painkiller.
Yael: ::trying to wake fast:: Sorry… what?
Bailey: I’m sorry to wake you. Your IV has finished. May I? ::Sheila motioned with a hand to where the needle poked out of his skin::
Alora rest her chin back upon her arm as she watched the Elaysian doctor at work. She had a gentle disposition, and it gave her a great bedside manner. Smiling a little, she turned the expression toward her friend, hoping it was a bright encouragement in the darkness of his mind.
Yael: ::nodding, not liking it, but intent on tolerating it:: Right. Right, go ahead.
Bailey: I’ll be careful I promise. Tell me when you’re ready.
He nodded at her and extended the arm with the IV… but turned his face away and grit his teeth as she gripped it to draw the needle free.
Ever so slowly, once having retrieved a bandaid, did Sheila reach out to carefully hold onto Yael’s arm. Here all she had to do was remove the tap holding the needle in place and apply the bandaid. A fairly simple job that was over in a matter of minutes. Once complet did the CMO step back, allowing patient and friend to take a moment while she packed away the needle and the empty IV bag. Only after a long silence did she start talking again.
Bailey: You don’t have to talk but as your doctor and friend I do have a few things I would like to say. Do you mind?
Alora cast a glance to Ashley, an eyebrow arching upward. She would encourage him to be honest, forthright with the CMO. After all, Sheila wanted what was best for her patients.
He seemed to know something of what might be coming, and tried not to let his expression show it.
Yael: ::saying carefully:: … you can say it.
Bailey: I have reviewed your medical chart. I know this may be hard to hear but there is help available. Remember when I came to you? I may not be going through the same thing yet I hold more empathy and sympathy than you likely know. You Ashley Yael are not alone.
It was hard to remember that sometimes. In the deepest recesses of the darkness that threatened to consume, it was hard to claw your way to that knowledge. Such knowledge was hope. Yet, in the midst of it all, that hope seemed out of reach. Alora had been there. Still struggled. Despite it all, she knew she wasn’t alone. She was grateful for those who were there to support her.
Yael: I… know I’m not alone. ::he said the words, but it wasn’t clear if he *felt* this truth:: I’ve got very good friends.
Sheila and Alora both, and others too. In fact, since he’d come to Ops, he felt less alone than he’d felt in a very long time.
Bailey: I can see that you two came in here together. I would like, if you would let me to not only send you on your way with all the possible resources and medical care but another friend as well. I want and am 100% willing to support you through this, as you have supported others.
Sheila did not just want to support Yael as a friend or even their doctor. She wanted to support him in the way he had her. Granted part of that support meant she had to take at least a couple weeks off duty but it had worked it some extent. Now she only felt the emotions and they told her that based on the look in her friends eyes that this relapse was far deeper than even she knew. It made her guilty and angrier, not that she would show it. It was her job to take away others suffering. In this situation she would do that, everything she possibly could. It would be wrong to let the pair just walk away.
Yael: You don’t have to go to any trouble. I’m familiar with the methods and resources available. But… I appreciate your offering.
That sent alarm bells ringing through Sheila’s head. Yael was basically telling her, them, that they could handle the situation on their own. No way would she allow it, not as a friend, not as a CMO, not ethically or morally.
Bailey: No you...Listen. I can see you’ve been through this before but I’m not lying when I say I’m going to support you the whole way through.
Ashley listened to Doctor Bailey, wondering what she meant by that. He wanted them to know he would take this seriously, so even though it was a little demoralizing, he wanted to give them something of his thoughts now that he wasn’t dramatically drunk or aching in pain.
Yael: I understand, I just… don’t think I need *that* much attention. I think the first thing I should do is to contact my counselor back on Earth. I haven’t touched base with her since I came to Ops… that was probably a mistake.
Alora paused. She’d been in regular touch with Raymond since her reassignment, though less often now that Ashley had taken over. Slowly, a small smile spread over her lips. How quickly he had ingrained himself with her - and how similar were they to each other in some ways?
DeVeau: I think that’s a good idea.
Bailey: Yes...It may very well be a good idea but I have my hesitation. I don’t know this counselor and while they may be good at their job I have a gut feeling that you would be better off with physical support that is actually on this station.
Sheila did not in any way intend to sound mean about it. However in her mind it seemed wrong to contact someone that was so far away for help and who was to say they would follow through. To be honest she was thinking through all the other possibilities. Thinking through the situation as someone who had been through the fire as well. Of course Sheila and Yael’s situations were vastly different yet nevermind that. Sheila kept seeing a mirror reflection of herself the more she stood there.
Realizing Doctor Bailey was serious, he wasn’t sure what to do to sway her concerns. He knew his counselor on Earth well, and they communicated well, but the distance and time difference was definitely an issue too. He sighed lightly as he thought on it.
Yael: It’s the whole “who counsels the counselor” problem. I need someone who knows the methods just as well as I do, so they can get their torpedos through my shields. And… I don’t know if any of my colleagues here on the station are prepared to do that.
Essentially, he needed someone who knew the game so they could cut through his bull and force him to address things honestly.
Bailey: When a counselor needs counseling they become a patient and get treated no different.
DeVeau: How do you feel now?
Yael: I think I just want to sleep all day, but I’ve taken up your bio-bed too long. ::to Bailey:: I’ll see you again soon?
Now Sheila could only sigh. If Ashley left now...Well the CMO did not want to cause a scene or do anything rash. No that was not going to happen. Was 100% not the direction she was going to go. Nevertheless she now felt she had to do something, anything. Yael seemed defeated. Sooner or later the situation would eat away at them.
Bailey: Wait just a minute. Firstly you have not taken up my biobed too long. You can stay here all day if you like. And second, I am not just letting you walk out of here just yet. ::The whole time she spoke her voice was calm, stern, but calm::
The Denobulan hybrid paused and stiffened at her tone, realizing she had more to say and feeling a bit guilty that he thought he could just walk out without her say-so.
Bailey: I still have a few things I would like to discuss. And I know you may not want to hear it, that you may know the drill, yet I can’t let you walk away without it being said.
Steeling himself for what might be coming, Ashley slipped his legs off the side of the bio-bed and sat on the edge, leaning on his hands.
Yael: Okay. Go ahead.
Alora leaned against the side of the bed, willing to wait until Sheila was confident she could release Ashley. If nothing else, Alora would certainly make sure he got home all right, and she would be certain to check in on him regularly as well.
Here Bailey was reminded of something Cadet Harper said to her during her own medical appointment. If the situation had been reversed how would she handle the situation? Like she was now. Tell the patient what was on her mind, let them know all the options and only let them walk away once she had done everything in her power that she possibly could to assist them.
Bailey: Now, I’m going to be completely honest with you here. I’m not mad at you. I want you to know that. I’m not going to judge you for what you have or have not done. I only want to express to you what I medically think is best for your treatment. And right now, understanding the situation slightly better, I would be comfortable running an assessment. Now I know I said earlier I could not do much, I wasn’t lying then, there is not much I can do to cure a hangover, however there are many things I can do to prevent damage.
Yael: ::not understanding, but paying attention:: An assessment?
Bailey: I would like, if you are willing, to start you on a medication to help lessen the craving.
He was a little surprised, but he supposed he shouldn’t be. It wasn’t uncommon to suggest medication for a chronic issue. He’d done it himself for several crewmates, using it as a practical tool to help them with their anxieties, or their PTSD. He himself had been on medications the year prior and had weaned himself off them. Maybe this set-back was a wake-up call.
Yael: That’s… probably a good idea, actually.
Alora opened her mouth. Then she shut it. Then she opened it again, but once more, closed. She was not a medical officer, Sheila was. So, she remained silent.
Now Sheila had said practically everything on her mind. Only one item left. But that and the medication could be put in for order and Ashley could come back at another time, maybe tomorrow for the medication, next week for tests. Best not to overwhelm the system at this place and time.
Bailey: I’m going to place an order for the medication. You’ll have to come in tomorrow for the first does. Sound reasonable? And too I’d like to schedule an appointment for a liver scan. It doesn’t have to be done today, in the next few weeks would be best. Those are the preventative measures I’d like to take.
Yael: I’d consent to that. It’s a reasonable thing to do.
Bailey: And I strongly advise that yes contacting your old counselor is something you should do, I’d like you to consider seeing someone more often on the station too.
The main reason Sheila pushed so hard for Yael to see someone new was that it was someone new. A new counselor might be able to push through in a different way. To that end with a new method came a new system that would take time to learn the ins and outs of. With their old counselor they might already know ways around the system, ways to fall back and make little progress. Nevertheless Sheila had every confidence in the Denobulan before her.
Yael: I will… ::a little more resistant to the idea, but he would obey the doctors order::... consider the counseling staff and choose someone locally who I can speak with more routinely.
Alora nodded. It was important to have someone local. Raymond had told her to do the same thing. Not that Alora was a model patient or anything, but Ashley was different too. He had a problem with abusing a substance, one that he’d overcome for some time, and now the darkness had tried to drag him down again. Well, she wasn’t going to let that happen, and him getting a counselor of his own would certainly help.
Bailey: That’s all I ask.
Yael: ::nodding:: If you approve… I’d like to get some more sleep. In my quarters. If that’s alright?
Bailey: Of course. I see no more reason to keep you. I’ll call you back tomorrow for your medication.
Slipping off the bio-bed, Ashley was more steady on his feet. Even though he still felt like crap and his head still hurt, it was no longer that “shaky death warmed over” type of feeling or a pounding migraine.
Yael: ::to Doctor Bailey:: Thanks, Sheila… ::then to Alora:: … I’ll see you-
But Alora interrupted him before he could finish.
DeVeau: Oh no you don’t. I’m walking you home, buster. I can kick your butt if you try to dodge me too.
Bailey: Take good care of yourself. ::She meant it. There was hope for them all yet::
The Denobulan hybrid felt it was a little overkill, but he knew better than to argue with her. Stepping out of sickbay he made his way to the turbolift with Alora, and when they boarded it he leaned against the wall. He was envisioning his comfy bed and was very glad he hadn’t volunteered for any walk-in blocks today.
Lt. Cmdr. Alora DeVeau
Chief Science Officer
Starbase 118 Ops
Lieutenant Sheila Bailey
Chief Medical Officer
Starbase 118 Ops
Ensign Ashley Yael
Starbase 118 Ops