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Scatter Brained

Posted on 20 Jan 2020 @ 2:45am by Lieutenant Commander Joey Geisler & Commander Jayla Kij

Mission: Epilogue
Location: Various
Timeline: April 2, 2389

Joey sipped her cup of tea, opting to avoid caffeine at all costs since she was nursing, and moved over to the bassinet to look in on the twins. They'd both been changed, fed, read to (though, they had no idea what their mother was saying to them), and were now sleeping soundly, something she felt she should be doing. However, something in the back of her mind was nagging at her... something she felt she was forgetting. But, it seemed like the harder she tried to figure out what that something was, the more it eluded her.

"This is going to drive me crazy," she muttered, crossing to the other side of the room near. Joey looked into the dishes of Rico and Pequeno. There was food and water inside of them, which meant she hadn't forgotten about her two favorite furry boys, so that meant it was something else entirely. The new mother was about to make her way into the bedroom when realization dawned on her. A two week appointment for the twins in sickbay in... her gaze went to chronometer... less than ten minutes!

"Crap, crap, crap," Joey chanted as panic began to set in. She tossed her cup into the recycler, barely drinking any of the liquid inside, and began to run around like a mad woman to get things together. It wasn't unusual for her to forget things these days, though, but she really hoped things would go back to normal sooner rather than later.

She made her way over to the bassinet and reached inside to scoop Alison up right before shouldering their bag. "Please, don't wake up. Mommy forgot you two had somewhere to be today," she begged, unable to keep from feeling a little flustered. It seemed luck was on her side as Alison stayed asleep, but the same could not be said for her brother when his mother scooped him up. Joey knew what was coming the second his little face screwed up, and it took every ounce of self control she had not to cry with him. Somehow, though, she managed to hold it together and managed to get Jameson calm once again.

Quickly, yet carefully, she made her way out of the cabin and headed for the nearest turbolift, requesting deck six once they were inside. The trip was short, and uneventful, which she was grateful for, and in no time, she was moving down the corridor and into sickbay. Joey looked around until she spotted someone from sickbay and moved over to them. "I think I'm late, but I have an appointment with Doctor Kij."

"Oh, with the little ones!" squealed Nurse Rigby. "Of course. She's expecting you. Get them settled on biobed six and I'll get her for you."

"Thank you," Joey said. At Nurse Rigby's request, she made her way over to biobed six and very carefully laid the babies down on it. The new mother didn't even realize she'd been holding her breath, however, when both babies remained asleep, she let it out slowly. Of course, they'd be waking up soon enough once their checkup began, but that came with the territory.

Having been summoned by a squealing and hyper nurse Rigby, Jayla hurried over to biobed six to find the babies already waiting for her. "Hi," she said cheerfully to Joey. "And how are the patients today?"

"Hey, there," she returned with a smile. "They're doing very well, I think, and I certainly hope you're able to confirm that for us today."

"They're always so cute when they're sleeping, aren't they?" Jayla commented, taking out her tricorder and beginning scans of Jameson first. "Oh, yes, these are the readings we like to see," she replied as if talking to the baby. "Good resting heart rate, perfect blood pressure, wonderful respiration. Yes, he's doing splendidly!"

Joey looked to visibly relax a bit. Why was she so nervous? The answer to that was easy. It was because the twins were early. Technically, they should have still been tucked safely inside her womb, but circumstances beyond her control saw them arriving a bit early. "That's great!" she said, unable to contain her excitement at hearing Jameson was doing so well. With one clean bill of health, her attention turned to her daughter.

"And now let's check Alison," said Jayla, turning to the girl. She scanned in silence for a few moments, then smiled. "Same. All stats look great. They're both healthy babies! Now we just have to weigh them to make sure they're putting on weight." She tapped a few controls on the bio bed so it knew to weigh both sides separately. "These things are so wonderful," she added.

Each baby had nearly put on a full pound since their birth just over two weeks before, but it was Jameson that still weighed a few more ounces than his sister did. Joey supposed the little guy had to make up for his lack of hair somehow, and it that's how he wanted to do it, it was okay with her. "What's the verdict? Are they putting on weight? I read somewhere they're supposed to put on about an ounce a day," she said. To her, they felt like they weighed a bit more than they had when first born, but the medical equipment would be able to determine that for sure.

"On average, yes," agreed Jayla. "They typically lose an ounce the first day or two, but then they start gaining regularly. They've each put on nearly a full pound. Twelve ounces for Jameson and eleven for Alison. They're both doing very well."

Joey looked relieved at Jayla's words. Both babies were happy and healthy, which was exactly what she hoped for. "I'm glad, and I never got to say it before now, but thank you for everything you did. I was terrified. Going into labor early, the Dolmoqour, along with other things going on at the time. You being calm helped keep me calm, and I appreciate that more than words can say."

"They train and condition us to stay calm in Medical school," Jayla replied, making notes in a PADD. "After all, a panicky doctor isn't worth much."

"I know, but I still wanted to thank you," Joey told her, looking toward the sleeping babies, then back to Jayla. "Do I need to have a checkup, too, or are we good to go until next time?"

"If you're feeling off, we can definitely do a quick check-up, otherwise, it can wait," Jayla replied. "I was pleased with your progress when you left Sick Bay, so I see no reason to force you to go through it unless there's an issue."

The new mom shook her head. "Honestly, I feel pretty good except for a little tired, but I understand that comes with the territory where babies are concerned," Joey told her. "I think we might be able to hold off for a little while as far as a checkup for me goes."

“Agreed,” said Jayla. “I’m that case, you’re all set. I want to see them again in another couple of weeks just to make sure they’re progressing, but if you have any concerns in the meantime, don’t hesitate to call me okay?”

"I promise I will. I do have a quick question for you, though. As you know, I've read a lot while I was pregnant, but nothing beats the actual advice of a doctor," Joey pointed out. "They tend to fall asleep about ten minutes in while they're eating, and I've been trying to wake them up. Is that the right thing to do?"

“My mother always says that if a baby falls asleep, let her sleep,” she replied. “There’s some truth to that. If they’re falling asleep ten minutes in, they’ve probably had enough. If they get hungry again, they’ll wake up. And if their feeding schedule is a bit weird right now, that’s fine. They’re newborns and premies, so it’ll take them a bit to settle into a good schedule.”

"We're slowly working our way into a routine, and as long as they're putting on weight and staying healthy, that's what matters. From now on, though, I'll let them sleep. Thank you again," she spoke, reaching down to scoop Jameson up, then looked toward Jayla. "Do you have a few minutes to hold them? If you want to, I mean."

"I always have a few minutes to hold babies," Jayla replied happily, carefully scooping Alison off the biobed and cradling her expertly. "Oh, I don't get to do this often enough," she cooed softly at the baby. The pang of regret stabbed her gut once more, betrayed by her face for exactly two seconds before she schooled her features into one more fitting of holding a baby. "But at least I get to now, isn't that right?"

"And whenever else you'd like to. Are you ready for Jameson?" Joey asked, moving closer to Jayla as she prepared to transfer the little guy to whichever arm the doctor made available. Years in Security taught Joey many things, and it was enough to pick up the look on her face. "You want to have children of your own, don't you?" Her voice was soft, only loud enough that the other woman was able to hear her in case anyone was nearby.

Jayla carefully but quickly shifted Alison to one arm and smiled a bit sadly at Joey. “So badly,” she replied. “But I’ll have to settle for adoption. I can’t have children of my own,” she explained.

Joey carefully passed Jameson over to the doctor. "If you don't mind me asking, do you know why? We can go somewhere more private if you'd like."

“It’s okay,” said Jayla, now happily cradling both babies. “I don’t exactly keep it a secret. Trill are marsupials, you see, and instead of the baby attaching to the uterine wall, it attaches to a yolk that sustains it for the first 12 to 14 weeks, at which point it is transferred to the pouch. It can make it there on its own, but we usually help if we notice. Anyway, my body doesn’t make enough yolk. The embryo would only last a couple of weeks and then die. Oh, I could do hormone therapy or use a surrogate or something, but there are so many children who need homes, I’ll probably just adopt.” She gazed down the two little ones in her arms. “But there’s nothing quite like a baby, you know? I’m likely to miss this stage with adoption.”

"It's clear you want it, though, and I'd like to think that you and I are friends. I don't trust just anyone with my care, or the care of these two little angels, either," the new mother began, pausing as she tried to gather her thoughts. "What if... I were to be a surrogate for you? You could still adopt when you're ready to, but you would also have what you've always wanted."

Jayla felt as if she were going to cry. “That’s so sweet of you,” she said, blinking back tears. “I don’t think I’m ready quite yet, but thank you so much for offering.” She attempted to wipe an eye on her shoulder, but failed and gave a watery laugh. “Wow!” she added. “I didn’t expect that sort of thing to have such an effect on me.”

Joey reached out to carefully hug the Trill woman, being mindful of the twins she currently held, and reached for a tissue to gently wipe under her eyes. "I know I'm not physically ready right now since I've just delivered these two, but just know it's an offer that won't be retracted," she said, making a mental not to talk to Harvey about it just in case.

“Thank you,” Jayla replied, sniffling lightly. “If I decide to try, you’ll be the first person I tell. And I won’t be upset if you have to back out. There are other things I can do.”

"I'll help out any way that I can. Besides, maybe some day in the future, Aunt Jayla will give these two someone they can play with aside from each other," the Intel Chief said, offering her a smile.

“Aunt Jayla would certainly love to do that,” Jayla replied, gazing at the twins agin. “Oh they’re just so tiny at this age and they always smell so good. Well, almost always,” she added with a laugh. “But you’re know what I mean. Babies don’t have bad body odor. Not enough bacteria built up on their skin. And all that talc and baby shampoo- it’s just wonderful!”

"I wonder if that's why Harvey was told he smelled like baby," Joey mused with a smile. Of course, Jayla wasn't wrong about them always smelling good. "Remember what I said, too. You're welcome to hold them whenever you want to, and if duties permit, maybe watch them on occasion?"

“Oh I would love to babysit!” replied Jayla, excited. Indeed, the mere idea thrilled her to no end. “Maybe I can rope Alex into helping. New date idea: play with babies.”

The smile Joey wore grew at Jayla's excitement. To see the Trill woman happy made her happy, especially after what she'd learned not too long ago. Not to mention, she trusted her. "I'm sure he would be willing to help out. Especially if you asked him to," she told her, looking at the two babies who were snuggled in the doctor's arms where they slept soundly.

“I’m sure he would, too,” agreed Jayla. And then, with a sigh, she added, “as mush as I would love to just stand here and hold these to miracles all day, I have other patients. Unfortunately.” And she grinned, moving to hand Alison back to Joey. “Can you manage on your own? I could get one of the CNAs to help you back to your quarters.”

"I feel like I need to make an hour long appointment just so you can hang out with them longer," she said with a smile, carefully scooping Alison into her arms and shifting her around a bit. "I'm finally getting the hang of handling these two, so I think I can manage if you can slip him into my free arm."

“Of course,” replied Jayla, carefully laying Jameson in his mother’s arms. Once he was settled, she rested one hand on each of their heads and said, “goodbye, little ones. Behave for your mother, okay? Don’t give her too much grief. And have her call me if you don’t feel well.”

"I promise if they so much as get a sniffle we'll come see you. It's always better to be safe than sorry, right? We'll see you soon, and not because they aren't feeling well," the new mother assured her friend. "Thank you again, Jayla." With that, Joey headed back out of sickbay feeling a little less worn out and scatter brained than when she went in.

 

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