A lot can change in 6 months!

by John posted June 10, 2018 category Art / Design, Family, Work
Leafy Sea dragon by John T. Patten

Leafy Sea dragon by John T. Patten

I’ve had an incredibly tumultuous time since my last update, 6 months ago. Both my marriage and my job came to an end. Yeah, huge. These are the kind of life-changing events that can crack a person wide open and expose the gooey core of one’s being. But you know what? So be it. I usually keep the focus of this site on my work, rather than my personal life. But sometimes they are so entwined that it’s a bit silly to tiptoe around the elephant in the room. So let’s take a look and shine a light right up its clacker.

10 Years ago I moved to Melbourne, a city in a state I’d never even visited before, for a person I had met and fallen for a few months earlier. I moved in and in the process I became an instant Dad to my step-son who had then only just turned 2 years old. In February 2009 we got married, surrounded by the rainforest, friends and family, in the Blue Mountains, not far from where my folks live. Right up until the birth of my sons, that was the happiest day of my life.

For one reason or another which aren’t for online consumption, the marriage faltered and we both reluctantly recognized that we were very different people, aside from the core beliefs and ideals which magnetized us in the first place. We eventually recognised that those beliefs weren’t enough and that we needed to go our separate ways. This was a tragic conclusion, given how much respect and care we still have for each other, and the love we share for our children. But that’s the thing. I’m 40 years old. Like most other 40 year old people I’ve been through a lot. I’ve been through a traumatic break-up before and I don’t have anything new to learn from sitting around crying and feeling sorry for myself. When I did that in my 20’s it was the kind of event that resulted in a lot of introspection, rebuilding and growth. This time, I’ve already got those tools in place. I’m a lot more positive and wiser than I was 20 years ago. I’ve no hesitation in recognising and vocalising that I’ve had for the most part a great 10 years with an amazing person and I’ll look forward to being a friend to someone who I trust and continue to value, as we both do our best to raise our children into quality human-beings.

I find myself now at a crossroads where one might presume that I’d be despondent and unsure. Yeah there’s an element of that, however for the most part I’m excited!! That’s both personally and professionally, for what’s to come. Life is going to get a lot better.

I’d already begun to plan the next phase of my working life when this change loomed. My job was removed, just as I had been anticipating, opening the door for a new opportunity at the museum. I’m now working on initiatives that were already on my radar, only now it’s without a plethora of distractions attached. My role since January has been Strategic Business Partner, Culture & Engagement, developing platforms for workplace diversity, employment and education. It’s also a role which will be responsible for helping to celebrate the wins, the people and culture of a great place to work. It’s nice for a change to have responsibility whilst not having to shoulder the world, with little support. So – there’s that.

Project-wise things will be slowed down a fraction as I get the new world under control and devote myself to my boys. I am however keeping the iron hot, working on a public artwork as well as developing my film projects and investing in equipment.

By the way, here’s a video I forgot to post last time around. This is an ad campaign I featured in for Siemens Europe whilst still managing the centre, late last year.

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