Carolyn Aitken is an Educator and Adult Trainer both in the community and professionally in her role as Program Manager with LaTrobe Lifeskills. As Program Manager at LaTrobe Lifeskills, Carolyn is responsible for the Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) group. She had a very positive influence on the development of a range of skills in the program participants, and she continually emphasised aspects of improving self-esteem and personal development. Carolyn has over fifteen years experience, having initially worked as a secondary school teacher at Odyssey House, a drug rehabilitation centre, and local Department of Education Secondary Schools. Since 1997 she has facilitated adult education classes as a volunteer tutor in "Creative Writing" and "Speaking Effectively in Public" at the Eltham and Diamond Creek Living and Learning Centres.
Throughout her teaching career, Carolyn has been involved with students who have special needs or require special learning techniques to achiev success. She excels in "holistic" teaching, believing that if you care about the student as a person, they will use their own unique learning style to acquire new skills.
Carolyn has been responsible for designing, writing, presenting and evaluating training programs with the secondary school system and local community groups. She actively believes in the power of personal education and is constantly working with adults to encourage and support their continued learning.
Carolyn Aitken Walks the Sacred Way at Delphi
I saw an outstretched arm, and it seemed to beckon me down. There was no sound, just a powerful plea in the silent gesture, as if to command me to it's bidding. I was intrigued because I thought I was about to see a performance of some kind, especially as the figure stood, still as a statue in the dull light of center stage. Before I realized it, I began to move. I stood, and then began to walk back down the path that I had navigated earlier in the afternoon. It was more difficult because the light had faded, and my eyes would not leave the motionless figure in the middle of the stage. My eyes were held, enthralled and I could not see beyond the dramatic simplicity of the lone figure as it held me in its gaze.
Gradually, I realized the light behind the figure had dimmed further, and it was thrown into semi darkness. The folds of the cloak worn by the figure, and the basket it carried, disappeared into gray shadow. All of the while, the shadows created by the figure splayed out like the spokes of a wheel, and it seemed as if the pattern moved with me. My feet found a sure way down the unfamiliar path, and I marveled that they could, because I am not normally so fleet of foot.
The night was so still. There was not a breath of wind, nor was there any hint of the usual night noises. All I could hear was the sound of my shoes as they hit the dry dirt path. I drew closer, and the figure turned as if to expect my approach. Soon I was close enough to see the cloak that enveloped the figure. It was a rich dark blue.
At the same time, I realized that the basket it carried must have been very heavy, because it was laden with fruit, vegetables and bread. I was unsure of what to do next, because I had finished with the path, and I stood at the base of the huge stage. I quickly looked arond. My eyes searched for, and found the stairs leading from my level to the stage itself. Without conscious thought, I walked to them, and slowly, began to mount. One sure step after the other, I drew closer. The figure turned and bent down as if to greet me. It waited.
I climbed onto the stage, aware that I was unafraid. It was amazing really, because I was so totally out of my comfort zone. I realized the light was brighter on the stage, but the only thing I could see clearly was the cloaked figure. Everything else was in complete darkness, and the silence was deafening. I took a few deep breaths, in and out to calm myself. Then, I moved forward. Immediately, I had a strong premonition that something wonderful and cataclysmic, was about to happen. It washed over me in a whisper that everything was it was meant to be.
At last we share centre stage. Incredibly, the figure is about the same height and build as myself, and I know the form is that of a female. She lifts her head slowly to look me in the eye, and then gracefully flips back the blue velvet hood. Silver and white sparks zap and flitter, atom like around her aura, and I am dazzled.
I take a very sharp inward breath. No! It cannot be. For a very long moment everything seeems to stand still. No words are spoken because they are not necessary, nor is an introduction required. I know her. She is older than I imagined, and I never ever expected her to be serene. There is both strength and beauty in her face, and I am humble in her presence.
I knew she existed of course, almost from the beginning of time, but I lost contact with her. From veiled mists of memory, I remember dreaming of this meeting repeatedly over the years. I never expected it would come to pass, and I never ever saw her face in my dreams. Then, some years ago I became re-aquainted with her by accident, but she had the voice and mannerisms of a timid, resentful child. I am amazed as I stand before her now, because she dows not display any of these charateristics. Instead, she appears mature, confident, and sure. She is all at once, my nemesis, the font of my wisdom, the guide of my days and the lessons I have learned. She has the grace I often struggle to show.
We stand side by side, I am next to her, so close that I seem to be part of her. Fusion! I feel a sense of complete fulfillment, an understanding and acceptance I have not experienced before. No long a mystery, I AM THE SAGE. I stand whole and proud to 'be' myself.