Captain’s Log, Stardate 08082021.8

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We were on the edge of Federation space, observing the Cordovo nebula when we detected a previously unknown planet within the nebula. Current scientific understanding of nebulas seem to indicate that planets shouldn’t be able to form within nebulas. Looking to further learn about the planet, our crew took a shuttle craft to this Class Y type planet to explore.

Once on the surface, chief engineer Noah found himself ensnared in some rather large spider webbing. I ran over to free Noah when I realized that first officer Bella was missing.

In the distance, I hear faint screams for assistance. Noah and I run over to find Bella has also been ensnared by the rather large spider webbing prevalent on the planet. As I set Bella free, I heard a loud rumbling in the distance. I looked over to see and seen shape of what could only be described as a large arachnid. I alerted my crew and we began to flee using a large vine to swing across a large chasm in an attempt to escape.

As captain, I was resolved to allow my crewman to cross ahead of me despite my fear. The large arachnid got ever closer as I watched my crew cross one at at time. I could hear the footsteps closing to within a few meters of my position when I was finally able to swing across.

Our tricorders were having trouble determining the location of our shuttlecraft. My chief engineer had to go up to a high point on the planet in order to amply our signal. Shortly thereafter, our scanners began to function properly and we made our way back to the shuttlecraft and left the planet.

Back on the ship (at home), I received a subspace communication from Captain Cassandra. It was her birthday and wanted to rendezvous at Starbase 223 to celebrate the occasion. I was a bit reluctant given that we don’t talk much nor do we have much in common. I attempted to ascertain who else would be showing up for her birthday and eventually realized that her only other friend, Pam, wasn’t going to be there. With a bit of hesitation, I agreed to treat her for her birthday.

I usually enjoy talking with other people in order to get their unique perspective on life. Cassandra is still a bit young (and possibly developmentally delayed) and I found myself trying to comfort her about the loss of her dad and sister. I may have been a tad too playful at moments because of the tangential nature of conversing with her. One moment we’re talking about her dad, next moment shes remarking about some guy at the bar and another moment about my kids in the span of a minute or so. Soon enough, the Starbase promenade (the restaurant) closes and I send her via shuttlecraft back to her ship.

I send out a subspace communication to Captain Eric and we talk at length. The conversation started out great. He finally was a lot more straightforward with me. The conversation lasted nearly 4 hours. Our interactions always have the same trajectory; it starts out so well and slowly devolves. He’s incredibly smart but seems to use what he knows to both teach and purposely hurt me. It’s almost ironic because the way he carries himself you wouldn’t think there was much at all to him. I have to remember to keep my distance from him because he can easily outmaneuver me. Yet, I almost feel compelled to meet him in person. I know it can’t work and there would be nothing accomplished. My instinct says don’t and I’m inclined to listen to that as he scares me. I don’t know if I will be able to resist and that scares me.

One thing I can say I’ve learned being out here as captain of my own ship is that I have far less control than I used to believe. I touched on this during a previous entry, but I feel like I’m piloting a sailboat across the ocean. I used to think that having an in-depth understanding of the ocean and the boat would ensure a successful voyage across the sea. Now, I realize that I am at the mercy of forces much stronger and much more complex than I first anticipated. The ocean and wind function at a level that a mere sailor can’t possibly fully understand; much less hope to control. I find myself being being moved about in a seemingly random direction. I’ve resolved to do my best to make course adjustments and hope it is sufficient to get me to my final destination…a place I’m not even sure exists…and as I proceed further along into the ocean, I feel like it has a mind of its own..sometimes it seems like it’s upset at me even daring to sail on it and other times, it seems to provide a beautiful current and view that heartens me during choppy waters.

Credit: Joseph Barrientos

Captain’s Log, Stardate 08052021.5

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We were mapping the Folso sector when my crew decided to beam down to Willows 3. The class M planet was abundant in lush foliage, marsh and rocky outcroppings. While conducting routine scans and documenting our findings, I had a lot weighing on my mind.

One thing that was on my mind was the fact that my breast augmentation was not being covered by my insurance. Technically, it can be covered if it is causing gender dysphoria. I have had some dysphoric thoughts regarding my breast and thus went in to be assessed. Being denied coverage, I had to think about whether I should push for it. I know I could make a big stink and force the issue. The question then is if I should. I had previously prayed regarding the matter. Plus, even my friend Ray was surprised that I that I was pursuing the augmentation given that I had previously indicated that I didn’t need to because ultimately it was more of a vanity thing because my natural breast, though small, are more feminine than not. I sorta felt like a hypocrite saying I wouldn’t and well I have concluded that this denial is something I won’t fight against. I still feel a bit insecure about their size but I suppose part of this whole transisition is learning to accept that I will never look exactly how I’d like but at least I’ve made progress towards my goal.

Speaking of goals, I’ve thought a lot of about where I’m going. I’ve had to make a number of course corrections to turn my life around. It’s been a massive undertaking given that fact that I have been readjusting my biology (transitioning with hormones), my routines, approach to social interactions, how I process things emotionally, intellectually, physically (via surgery, diet, exercise), and spiritually. I almost liken it to rebuilding a ship by tearing out nearly everything but the underlying scaffolding. A lot of progress has been made but I am unsure if the ship is ready for all the rigors of interstellar travel and possible war. And yet, in some ways, I feel like I haven’t had a chance to proceed slowly because the shipyard where I’m being put back together keeps coming under attack. It feels like I have to continuously take the ship out of space dock with a patchwork of old parts and new and my adversary keeps targeting the weakest points on the ship. I’ve taken massive damage at times but continue to fight on.

In some ways, I feel like a battle-hardened captain. I’ve grown rather adept at defending against the usual attack vectors and strategies an adversary could employ. I’m a much fiercer opponent. Paradoxically, I’ve also become softer and happier. I have grown to apprecite the times I’m not having to be in battle. Still, I’ve grown quite weary at times. I suppose this is why I’ve hit higher highs and lower lows. Being free of the bad, I am grateful/relieved. The little things make me smile. Just…enduring the bad can be grueling and sap all my energy. I spend more time being exhausted and just trying to recover. Individual battles in of themselves aren’t that hard, its more the continous onslaught with the ending unsure.

The uncertainty is what makes things difficult. For example, if a WW2 solider knew for sure they’d be coming home to their house and family intact while they were battling, it wouldn’t have been as difficult as the uncertainty. The unknown is what causes the greatest fear, be it in a movie or in real life. The best horror movies build up suspense. It’s not the horrifying looking monster that is scary but what could happen to the protagonist. When you hear the protagonist’s friend being dragged off, screaming in horrified agnony into the unknown…that triggers a very primal fear of the terrifying possibilities. When one is allowed to fill in the blank with what bad could be happening, the viewer usually substitutes their fears with what’s happening to the victim as the viewer becomes terrified by proxy.

Life is filled with some really horrifying outcomes. Here in the Calos region, I only have to take a short flight to see someone who is starving and without a place to sleep. Calos has frequent days in the triple digits (above 38 degrees Celsius), I don’t want to imagine even that gruesome outcome…much less far worse that could be possible after this existence. I used to fear death even as an atheist because I assumed that death was a slow process…one where your brain fights for air and you suffocate..alone, in the dark, losing bodily sensation, thoughts scrambling and emotions filling with dread as you slowly drift into nothingness forever.

Now that I know that at the very least there is something with an insane amount of capability out here..I worry about its potential to inflict terror. I’ve had some inflicted on me already…stuff I don’t write about publicly, not yet anyways, and I have to say that my anxiety went from rather low most of my life to exceptionally high. I’m not sure if I will get to get around to documenting how I came to my conclusions, but I can only assure the readers that I didn’t come to this conclusion lightly and without an abundant amount of evidence.

Some certainty about the situation has helped but now I’m just doing the best I can and hoping its sufficient. Trying to be happy and doing what I should. Aside from that, I press forward with my missions.

Here’s me with Bella on a toilet paper throne. I look almost drunk here lol!

Off The Record

(A more extemporaneous log of random thoughts and feelings)

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Grr…I’m tired of being sick already. Tired of being tired. I’m not sure what I want to do or what I’m supposed to be doing but I’ve grown impatient. I keep almost waiting for some outside intervention to occur..I suppose if I wasn’t experiencing what I am I wouldnt almost hope for a Deus ex machina. I don’t think that is how this goes…like everything else, if I want out, I probably have to figure this out as it is.

I guess a bit of my lacking energy can be attributed to depression.. I’m not sure I agree with the bipolar diagnosis. I can have my high energy moments but hell I enjoy it. I think the manic phase is only an issue if you lose all concept on reality, something I don’t think I can lose. I guess I avoid medication cuz I don’t want to become zombified. I heard that can happen when you take bipolar medication.

I guess I miss being around actual people. Being connected online is nice but you don’t get the hugs.. you don’t see the smiles or hear the laughter. If something is bothering you and you don’t say anything but your body language is screaming it, sometimes someone will notice it and come over there to comfort you and maybe that’s just what I need is a lot of comforting.


Sometimes I feel like a dog being led around. Within the understanding of each dog is a belief that they are doing things out of their own volition. Yet, in most circumstances, the domesticated dog is being led into their choices by their owner. Sure within the scope of choices there is some personality quirks that bleed through all of the attempts at training but more or less, a dog is both the product of their environment and a bit of a slave to their DNA.

Additionally, because dogs don’t have higher cognitive abilities, they are unable to perceive the goals or methods of their trainer. If the dog learns to associate raising its hand with receiving attention or another form of reinforcement, it will raise its hand when prompted in order to get its reinforcement. An intelligent trainer will understand the breed and animal psychology in general based on accumulated knowledge and use it to get the dog to do what it wants while the dog no doubt believes its controlling its environment to achieve its aims without truely understanding that the raising of its hand is a conditioned response that was created to humor the owner.

Throughout most of my life, I believed that I had full autonomy to choose what I wanted in order to achieve my aims. I believed that all I had to do was acquire adequate information about my environment and adjust accordingly to get my reward. I guess you could say that I believed in free will and that the future was unwritten. It’s been rather jarring for me to learn that the scope of my free will is rather limited and being guided externally.

To know that I have been outmaneuvered at every step..but also in a very specific way for what is ultimately my benefit, in a way that is better than I would’ve chose…it does make me feel rather…. animalistic I suppose.. I think of how a human can guide a dog to a better existence being domesticated than it would have were it allowed to be feral even if initially the dog, if allowed, the dog would choose to be feral; believing in its own ability and desiring its own freedom rather than control. And knowing what I know now…I guess, despite the rigors of training, I’d choose to be domesticated once more…which is somewhat of a disturbing idea but an honest answer.

I sit here wondering if it all went away, how would I feel? I wanted the Truth…and now that I think I have a decent grasp at it, I’m sorta upset at what I found. I suppose its better than the nihilistic reality I thought was real. I should be grateful. I have thirsted for Truth for so long….but maybe I had hoped it would be more fun, more bending to my carnal desires as opposed to having to be calibrated for the needs of the universe. Is it wrong to want all the good and none of the bad?….I suppose its disingenuous to ask that…the bad helps us appreciate the good and well. I would think at some point we asked to be free to do our own way and it was given to us, we probably questioned the rules and so this place, Earth, existence, is a place to prove once and for all how it goes if there isn’t one ruler but if everyone was given free reign. And it goes to shit, no matter how many simulations or various permutations..given a different environment, genetic makeup, education etc I would undoubtedly eventually run my own planet into the ground without certain guiding principals and consequences. You win, okay?

I suppose since I’m stuck here for now I will try to make due with what is here, enjoy life and try to improve things like I’ve previously promised. Ugh.. I know, it can be worse…way way way way worse. So go ahead and yank….I’ll follow…just rub my head every so often, tell me I am a pretty cat, a good cat, yes? Thanks.

Captain’s log, Stardate 07302021.2

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The last few days I’ve been confined to my quarters. I thought that I had caught the galactic plague but after being tested by Starfleet medical, I was cleared of covid despite having very similar symptoms. Nonetheless, it was a scary and trying experience.

Our three Caitian crewmen have got a long well and have been a valuable addition to our crew. They’re a bit more hyper than I’d like but with time I expect them to behave more like enlisted officers.

I’ve had a lot of time to reflect the last few days and I feel like I’ve finally come to a breakthrough. If not a breakthrough, at the very least I have much more confidence in my understanding of reality. I used to have a more concrete, objective view of reality. Yet, I’ve always been open to being wrong. As much as I like being right, being proved wrong means I’m learning something. I just didn’t expect to be so wrong…I’ve had to re-conceptualize soooo much. Combined with the the physical changes I’m going through via my transition, I’m quite different than I was back in 2019. I’ve learned to be softer, more patient, loving, to set boundaries and be a happier person. In short, I’ve matured a lot. I wish I could take credit for how far I’ve come but it took a significant amount of outside assistance to get me to where I am today. Though I am grateful, I do wonder if it could’ve been in a way that wasn’t also so very harsh at times. Perhaps it was done in the only way I could actually become who I need to be. I do have a tendency to get haughty so if it were given to me more easily, I probably don’t truly appreciate the gifts that have been given to me and possibly more that lies in store.

I’m so very glad that I was given the opportunity to appreciate the little things in life. The old me wouldn’t appreciate the simple things like a duck swimming in a pond. And though I do feel like I need a bit more of an extended break, I’m optimistic that I will find a way to make a positive change in the world one way or the other. I know it won’t be easy. I got a lot of work ahead of me. I don’t expect it to be handed to me. Sure, I would love for it to be handed to me, but I just need the right opportunity to apply myself. I’m willing to work for it, even if I never get worldly recognition or wealth, so long as I know that ultimately that I’m able to leave this place having added more than I’ve taken.

As I plan our next mission, I look forward to what lies ahead. There’s so many possibilities. Things may’ve not gone how I would’ve liked in the past, but at least for now the trajectory is arching upward.

Captain’s Log, Stardate 07262021.2

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The ship was deployed to the distant Sonomas system in order to coordinate with Starfleet Medical regarding a routine cosmic procedure. (meet with my surgeon about breast augmentation.)

I could’ve had this procedure done a lot sooner but I had tried to give the estrogen time to do its work. Plus, I tried to be accepting of the fact that I didn’t “need” bigger breast. Still, I hadn’t seen the development I was hoping for and started to hate what I had. Once I started to continuously feel inadequate, I decided that I should go for it. I have gone back and forth so many times in my mind regarding whether I should or shouldn’t. And really it isn’t necessarily about bigger but just having a more realistic female appearance. Although I had the option to go big, I am basically getting an augmentation (450cc implant) that would put me at a low C cup (currently an A). Given that the decision is made, now I wait until an opening that is estimated to be in October but could happen sooner. I’m excited to see the eventual outcome. Once I was done at Starfleet Medical, I decided to visit Captain Gandozer.

Captain Gandozer’s ship was docked in the nearby Sanjo star cluster. This was the first time I met someone from the United Commerce Coalition (UCC). The captain and his first officer (Linda) were very hospitable to me, something I very much appreciated. It’s always an interesting experience meeting someone from online. One starts to make certain assumptions about a person based on how they respond via text. Usually, what I have found is that there is always a bit of variation between how one is online and in person. I’d say that I expected the captain to be a bit more playful. Nonetheless, I did enjoy the captain’s insights on various matters. Talking about myself, I felt rather vulnerable. Later, I seen Gandozer vulnerable himself when his medications wore off and he had visible cognitive decline; the difference was especially jarring. Linda told me that happens when he doesn’t take his medication on time. Linda seems like an exceptional first officer. She spent her time just off to the side during my conversation with Gandozer making various items for friends and family. As I departed, she provided me with a lovely assortment of soaps and candy.

The next few star dates were rather uneventful with most of the crew off in the Bearva star system (summer camp). Eventually, the mission was completed and I went to retrieve my crew. My crew was filled with glee about their experiences. I felt glad that I could provide valuable training for my officers. The next star date, under orders from Starfleet, we set course for the Sapca nebula. While in the nebula, our ship rescued three Caitians that were at risk of dying in the nebula.

Chris
Shadow
Suki

My officers were happy to have new crewman aboard the ship. I’ve been hesitant to bring aboard other crew on the ship given that this Miranda class vessel (the apartment) is less than ideal given the crew compliment. Still, I went ahead and brought aboard the Caitians to give the crew something to focus on other than the holodeck (computer). I’ve been a bit lax in making sure they are reading and playing outside. I want the crew to have a variety of activities that they undertake… Aside from that, I’ve been having a variety of conversations over subspace (internet chat).

For awhile now, I haven’t had a go-to friend. I believe that has changed with the advent of Commander Alex. Though they are far from Federation space, I’ve felt connected with Alex. They’ve been smart, witty, empathetic and quite generous with their time. They couldn’t have come at a better time for me as I’ve moved away from trying to have a relationship to just having good friendships. At this point, as I’ve stated before, I probably shouldn’t even be in a relationship. Although I miss adult companionship, I am generally content with the freedom I have. Having good friendships can allow me to fulfill my emotional and social needs just enough so I can focus on my bigger goals. If Michelle were around, she’d probably be heartened that I am finally having a spark of ambition. I could almost hear her saying, “It’s about time! Stop writing about it and do something about it”. Additionally, I can’t close this without noting the other budding friendship. The one with whoever is interacting with me. You’re freaking amazing, er, most of the time.

Captain’s Log, Stardate 07182021: Part 2

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Like any officer surveying an unfamiliar area, I took out my tricorder (cell phone) and began scanning the area (pulled up a map). Having mapped out where Officer Michelle’s shuttlecraft (car) crashed, and where her remains were located, I set out to try and see if it was logistically possible for my former officer to have got to where she was in the dark barefoot on a cold rainy night.

As I set out to retrace her steps, I came to this rather narrow bridge crossing with a guardrail only on the right side. The grate-like floor of the bridge probably provided good grip but definitely couldn’t have been comfortable to come across. Once across the bridge, I came across wide-spectrum force-field (lightly barbed fencing.)

The force-field itself was not impassable. I managed to leverage myself over it by using the square holes in the fencing to place my feet and heaved my body near the corner where there was a sign. Though technically feasible given that I managed to get past the force-field, I still have my doubts as to Michelle’s ability to do this given her circumstances.

Just past the fencing is an open field. I decided to head towards what I assumed would be the most direct path to where Michelle was found.

Surrounding the perimeter of the clearing is more lightly barbed fencing. The fence itself didn’t have much anywhere to leverage myself onto. When I did try to hop it, it would buckle some and I had to backup or risk being cut by the barbs. I did manage to find a short tree nearby and swung down a branch. Then I was stuck having to push through extremely thick brush; some of it so thick as to be functionally impassable.

As I started to make my way towards where the end of the road was, I wanted someone to be on the phone with me in case something happened. I called my sister but she didn’t respond. I then decided to hail Regent Greg. He hasn’t talked much with me anymore but his voice is comforting and he’s usually easy going. The regent was helping Admiral Louise (his mom) but inquired as to what was going on. I gave him the context and that I was looking to be reassured. He stayed on the phone for a few minutes then said he had to go. I didn’t really want him to go. I told him, “You know, I don’t really have anyone else to talk to, you barely talk to me and yet I’m reaching out to you. Can you stay on longer?” Greg says, “I really have to help my mom now but keep me posted” and the transmission ends. I really wanted some reassurance at the time and I guess I’m really done with him. About time I suppose…he’s been over me for awhile now. If pressed, he’d probably say he still has feelings for me but his actions, or rather, inactions say otherwise. Anyways, at the terminus, the path forward is blocked off.

My instinct told me to turn around. Logically, I wanted to just hop this fence too and proceed further but something said, “No.” I’ve learned to listen to my gut and set a course back to my shuttlecraft. It was a long lonely way back. I decided to deviate from the path I took to get where I was to explore a possible alternate route. While making my way across another property, an inhabitant of the area was wondering what I was doing. I briefed her on my mission. Gene (her name) was very empathtic to me, even helping me cross her property via much more accessible route. She spoke about losing her husband to suicide and also wondered what he was thinking the last night he passed. Gene also recalled the search and rescue teams that came through the area. The local even helped me locate a more efficent route to my shuttlecraft and indicated that there was a possible path that didn’t require the crossing of the wide-spectrum forcefield.

Upon further conversation, Gene also told me that many shuttlecraft end up crash landing in the Bowman expanse because of the lighting and how abrupt the road ends. Guess several shuttlecrafts have had to be hauled off via a tractor beam from the area.

That is the path I took based on what I remembered from the place the car was found and body. I placed that blue dot there. Later, I decided to ask the Federation authorities (the cops) if they could again text me the official locations of stuff.

LKP= Last known postion, Purse is where the purse was, the Footbridge is where their dogs tracked to. Found is where she was found. The numbers are elevation.

So now looking in retrospect, I may’ve veered a bit more south than what Michelle did initially. I do think somewhere just past the footbridge, she must’ve, had to have taken the same route. That is…if she went by foot. If she did leave by foot, i do have a hard time believing that she willingly pushed through all that to end up where she was. The more likely conclusion was that she was fleeing. Why else did she take her purse with her initially then leave it where she did? Yet, it also doesn’t make sense why the purse is there if she was brought there. If someone was trying to hide her, the quicker route would be taking the Kruger road (eerie name) down then pushing through that way and leaving the purse by the car.

That whole night was bizarre. She was acting very unusual, though she was quite disturbed the whole of 2017. I’m unsure what to make of it. I wish they would’ve let me see her body. They refused because apparently it was extremely gruesome given that it had been partially consumed by the mountain lion. Officially, she passed as the result of exposure; no drugs in her system. Though I do wonder if there could be another explanation…. A part of me just thinks well, the past is the past and its time to push forward to the next mission. Another part of me wants vengeance if someone indeed do it. Plus, anyone that knows me knows I get obsessive about wanting to know the Truth. But….in this instance…the Truth may not ever be known.

Captain’s Log, Stardate 07182021: Part 1

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As I stare at my PADD (computer), I have a number of things on my mind. Part of me wants to talk about my week in chronological order. Another part of me wishes to talk about things in order of importance. A third part of me wants to write an unstructured entry. I suppose I’ll start out talking about my presentation to the Daystrom Institute (the podcast I livestreamed in collaboration with Women at Warp.)

I was quite nervous as I began my presentation. I’m a bit camera shy just doing recorded videos, being live definitely had me anxious. Still, I was honored to be able to just share a bit of my story and analysis. I was so encouraged to see all the positive feedback. Personally, I was slightly upset at myself because I could’ve made the presentation a lot cleaner with slides had I not rewritten it too close to the deadline. I started to become redundant in the points I was saying during the latter half of the presentation though they resonated with some nonetheless.

I have felt so alone and invisible for so long that just having others hear me and enjoy my content felt like a win. I liken it to how it was for Janeway and the crew when the doctor returns from the alpha quadrant in the episode, “Message in a bottle” and tells Janeway, “I told them everything that happened to this crew…and they asked me to relay a message….that you are no longer alone” and Janeway says, “60,000 light years seems a lot closer today.”

I still feel trapped in the delta quadrant but I feel heartened by the outpouring of support. Ive grown weary venturing out here alone. Taking on an entire quadrant with one ship could tax the most resilient captain. I hope we are able to once again reinitiate contact with the Federation in the future. I’ve learned a lot from my contact out here with the various civilizations that inhabit this quadrant and hope to share that intel with Starfleet. Until then, I have other missions to plan.

My bridge crew (Tino, Noah, Bella) have taken a shuttlecraft to chart the Beaval star cluster (summer camp). Their mission is scheduled to last 6 days. During the interim, my ship will be manned by a skeleton crew (I’ll be at home by myself). As I was flew through interstellar space (on the freeway), I came upon the area where former officer (my late wife Michelle) went missing. I’m not sure why but I felt compelled to explore the area. Perhaps because she’s been on my mind a lot lately.

It’s always hard flying by the Bowman expanse. I always wonder what was going through her mind that fateful night she went missing. Given that I had the time, I beamed down to the surface.

Though the picture above looks unremarkable, this is where Michelle parked her car on the last night of her life. Her body was later found over a mile away. Why she came out here is not known. What I was told is that she was last seen at midnight in Safeway and was out here at 3am. What happened between midnight and 2:30am? Its a 30 minute flight from Earth (my place) to the Bowman expanse.

I was working the overnight shift at the homeless shelter that night. We even had the cops come out a bit past 2am because we had to remove a volatile client. That night was grueling. After the cops left, the rest of the residents were on edge because of the disturbance and needed some reassurance. Plus I had to write a long report on what happened and had to brief the next shift on everything once they came in. I had looked forward to coming home only later to find the kids at home alone and Michelle no where to be found. I immediately called the guy she temporarily moved in with for a time, pakled Daniel. He hadn’t heard from her. I called a few hospitals and nothing. I received a call later about the car being found and immediately set a course.

After showing up on site, I ended up having to meet with the police. They were able to verify my whereabouts. They didn’t tell me too much more at that time. The next day, frustrated by the lack of updates I had returned to try and figure out where in that area she could be. I was intercepted and told to leave it up to them to find her. It took days but she was found. That was in 2017. The hardest part of the ordeal was trying to help the kids cope…they lost their grandma (my mom) earlier in the year and our house a bit after that. They hated (and still hate) the apartment. And losing their birth mom in such a gruesome way…it took everything I had to try to get them through it. It was so public too…cameras at the school…everyone knew and some of the kids were jerks and would bring it up like oh, “you dont have a mom now, shes dead”. So for me, job number one was helping them cope, which I believe I helped them do successfully though at a cost to my own mental health. Just, I never showed them the toll it took on me. I hid it well. I lost the only important adults in my life that year…

Here in the present, I almost forget just how poorly off I was after that. I do believe its an accurate statement to say that I died that day too. 2018 is so much of a blur I genuinely dont know what happened other than losing my job. It was so bad that after I won a battle for being wrongly terminated that I eventually didn’t continue to fill the appropriate paperwork to keep the benefits coming in. I literally lost $1000’s because of depression. And yet from then to now I’ve made a lot of progress, I think?

So with a clear mind I set out to try and retrace her steps. Its so super rugged that I always have had a hard time believing she got where she did on foot. And if she didn’t get there on foot, then someone must’ve put her there. And thus I set out to see the actual logistics…

To be continued….

Captain’s Log: Stardate 07102021.7

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Once again, the quadrant is being affected by intense interstellar radiation (very hot temperatures). Still, my expertise was needed at the Quadrotriticale (rice) shipping facility at Wesac 8. As I arrived, I was told of a potential disaster in the making when some baby tribbles were spotted near the Quadrotriticale site

I set out to administer neoethylene to the tribbles; a compound made by Dr. McCoy that drastically slows the tribble metabolism and ability to reproduce. After completing the mission at hand, I was tempted to keep one myself as they are very pleasing to touch tacitly. I remembered how much trouble they caused on the U.S.S. Enterprise and decided against keeping.

After neutralizing the tribble threat, I undertook a brief study of the local aquatic fowl before returning to my shuttlecraft. Aboard the ship, I felt compelled by the prophets to visit Bajor (church). For context, I hadn’t been to Bajor in at least a dozen years. Additionally, I wasn’t dressed in typical Bajoran garb. (I was wearing a somewhat short skirt). Still, I wanted to have my orb experience and set out to arrive just before services began.

I felt a bit weird at first as I was dressed in my Starfleet uniform and stood out relative to the rest of the attendees. Still, I was resolved to listen to the vedek (priest) and have an interaction with the prophets. I felt the wormhole aliens wouldn’t care what I wearing. I wasn’t sure what I was looking to get out the experience, only that I felt I should be there. This was the first time I’ve visited Bajor not on a mission from my superior officer (there because of my mom) nor there with some sort of ulterior purpose (such as socializing). I filled out a card and went in.

I snuck into the back of the temple hoping to draw as little attention as possible. At first, I was a bit bored but resolved to continue. I went to the bathroom during a break. Upon returning, most of the back pews were taken and I had no choice but to be just 2 rows from the front. My name was called. I then remembered that card I filled out. Ah crap, so much for being unnoticed. The vedek calls out my name again, asking if I am there. I sheepishly raise my hand. My cheeks get flushed as I can feel all the eyes on me. The vedek briefly thanks me for attending and moves on to speaking.

The sermon itself wasn’t that great; it felt like an intro psychology class. The fundamentals were sound but I felt the thrust of the sermon was a bit oversimplified. Nonetheless, I did feel something. I still have a bit of a hard time knowing what to believe, but it was a positive experience and that is what I will take away from this.

My training as a Starfleet officer tells me that Truth is something that must hold up under the scrutiny of scientific rigor. Yet, I am unsure what to make of the anecdotal experiences that have got me to this point. By definition, I am in a state of cognitive dissonance. These 2 philosophies seem to contradict each other. The “logical” solution would be that both have elements of Truth and work in harmony with each other. Just…this cognitive dissonance has caused me so much anxiety.

I felt much more comfortable when I thought I knew what was and wasn’t true. It doesn’t help that I continue to feel toyed with in a number of ways. I can’t be sure if the correlations I’m making are correct or not. There is definitely reason to believe that perhaps I altered my neuropathic connections due to artificially introducing dopamine into the synapses. Its bad enough that I don’t have an extensive social network, I’d rather not feel at odds with myself as well. For now, I still trust my judgement though I am always open to being wrong. I don’t want to become some delusional old lady insisting on something that has little or no basis in reality. I just wish, if anything, I had certainty again.

Rereading this I am reminded of the Data quote when Picard asks what the scanners show and Data says, “I don’t know”? And Picard replys, “what do you mean you don’t know?!”

Data responds, “The most elementary and valuable statement in science, the beginning of wisdom is ‘I do not know’.  I do not know what that is.”

That’s how I feel about existence.

Here’s the clip: https://youtu.be/8eDYVtPwWiM

Captain’s Log, Supplemental

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I decided to visit Starfleet Academy (my old uni) on a whim. A lot of memories come to mind when I’m here, mostly good. Being accepted into Starfleet was always a hope of mine growing up. Having the love of my life with me was a dream come true. When I look back on those memories, I think about the times we would go study in the library together, how we would bring lunch for each other, and how we got to cross the stage holding hands. We were so optimistic for the future back then. Had we known at the time that she’d be dead 8 years later and that none of our dreams came true, I wonder what we would have done differently

One thing I always try to be mindful of when thinking about how changing the timeline would impact the future is the unintended negative impacts such a thing would cause. If Q could teleport me back in time, what happens to my kids as they are? Do they cease to exist or would they carry on in this timeline just without me. Either result would be incredibly selfish. Not to mention all the people I’ve helped from then on to now; I probably wouldn’t have encountered most of the people I’ve helped change for the better. And to go back to the question, what do I do differently assuming I could freeze this timeline to take an alternate course of action

I guess in an ideal universe, I would be able to bring that Michelle to this future so she could at least watch her kids grow up. Aside from trying to bring her to the future, I wouldn’t change much just to not ruin how the kids came out. She didn’t accept me being trans. I don’t think that I would’ve stayed with her. We were very good friends however and I probably would try to have her as a roommate because if there was one person I could trust in this world,it was her.

I spent so much time with Michelle I’m not used to socializing with other people. Took for granted how easy it was for me to talk with her. She was an intellectual peer, had a lot of the same interests and I knew I could count on her when things were serious. She wasn’t without her faults but I do wish I could walk with her out here and have a long conversation about everything that has happened and then have her spend time with the family.

Captain’s Log, Stardate 07052021.6:

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Our ship rendezvoused with the USS Playworld near the Yol expanse (county) for an urgent meeting with Vice Admiral Robertson. From there, I was briefed about the need to retrieve an experimental nucleogenic weapon being developed by the Cardassians that could change the balance of power in the region.

My crew and I were given the coordinates to a location believed to house the weapon. As we took our shuttlecraft down to the nearby planet of Bryce 2 (park), the shuttlecraft came under heavy weapons fire and we had to evacuate via the escapes pods

Upon landing on the surface, the crew of the ship that fired upon us captured my first officer and imprisoned her. I set out to free her, get the weapon and leave the planet.

A local inhabitant helped me disable the holding cell officer Bella was in. The three of us went to the coordinates provided by the vice admiral via a speeder bike. We managed to take the device and began to flee the scene when the local fell behind. Bella and I had to circle back around for the girl.

We managed to escape from the Cardassians and returned to our ship. The balance of power in the quadrant remains firmly tilted towards the Federation, for now.

Us swinging back around for the local inhabitant. This ride was fun as heck!!

Back on the ship (at home), I ended up matching with someone on the intergalactic dating exchange and ended up having a bit of a negative interaction. I matched up with some guy that had scant profile information but seemed cute enough. He sent me his phone number and he called me up. After talking less than 5 minutes, he was pushing to meet. He asked what outpost (store) I was near and I was vague. He got frustrated with me for being vague and lashed out, saying that my paranoia wasn’t attractive.

For a moment, I began to second guess myself. I asked the opinion of other captains on Starfleet media (twitter) and the resounding consensus was that I was right in being cautious and dodged a bullet. Although I was reassured by the responses, I couldn’t help but question my own judgement. His scant profile information should’ve been a red flag in of itself. The fact that he pressed me to be more specific when I wasn’t ready should’ve caused my instincts to be kick in and be more assertive. I think lately I’ve been a bit too liberal in terms of who I’ve swiped towards just so I could meet someone in person. I’ve grown weary of long distance attempts I’ve tried with Eric, Greg and a couple others on and off. Plus, a crew compliment of 4 AND being Trill (trans), my dating options are limited.

Too often, it seems that us Trill are treated like we’re some sort of sexual frontier; a means to satisfy a curiosity or fetish. Even here in the 24th century, we’re usually portrayed as some sort of deviants living on the edges of society or too often, as a deranged villian. If there is a mainstream movie that portrays the Trill as the main hero, I sure as heck haven’t seen it. I guess what bothers me too is that to some extent, some of the Trill I have encountered do in fact relish their role as objects of desire. They even emphasize their hypersexuality. Yet, I don’t judge them. Early on, I was a lot more sexually provocative just so I could feel validated by others. It’s nice to feel wanted.

Most of my life, I’ve felt invisible and unable to fully express myself. Still, I am a full-fleshed out person that craves intellectual stimulation, emotional intimacy, a spiritual connection in addition to sex. Moreover, I have 3 subordinates under my charge. I would love to have someone I trust being around them. I so very much long for the full family experience. I suppose that is what I thought it could be with General Brandi. I even put up with Captain Eric’s lies and shenanigans for much longer than I should’ve. I feel destined to be alone and it saddens me. I’m trying to remain optimistic and count my blessings. This crew needs me to lead them confidently into the future and that I shall.