The name Mixed Needs was jotted down onto a list that Michael and I would refer to as our "baby names" list. We still have this list today. Though most of the names are inside jokes, some of them are just snippets of conversations, short phrases that we liked or word combinations that seemed to somehow stand for something we found meaningful or fun. They varied from.."Panic Banana" to "Refreshing the stream"..most were silly and most didn't make sense.
However, we always had Mixed Needs on this list. The meaning of this concept has changed over the course of my life and our relationship. Initially, I had thought of it as a way to encapsulate all of ones expectations in a partnership. It was always clear to us that we needed a village to make us happy, trying as hard as we could to not put the bulk of our expectations on just eachother. The weight of ourselves being dispersed to friends, loved ones, family, therapists thus reciprocating other's experiences and bringing them home to share.
As years went by, we kept coming back to MN, only this time, it represented new ideals.
The instant gratification of clicking and purchasing is all too common and we recognized it first within our selves. It's unfortunately the American pastime to consume without realizing the consequences both on our psychological health or how it affects the physical world. I believe we limit our senses, our ability to feel new experiences when we numb them this way..we aren't exploring the world anymore on our own, we're being fed what we should do, buy and what is socially acceptable. We're told that drinking in bars is the best way to hang out with friends and quality time with your family is a shopping trip. While we definitely partake in these activities, it isn't the only way of being and it isn't the only way of experiencing the world together. We have much more complex, ineffable Mixed Needs.
A quick example: You're feeling low, you look at instagram, maybe you're feeling stuck. Maybe instead of instagram, or looking at your phone. What you really need is a good roll on some grass. Find a patch of grass, if you don't have any, go to your neighbors lawn. They most likely won't care, just don't lay there all day. Give yourself some time to smell everything. Look up at the sky and imagine you're somewhere else in the world, looking up that sky in the exact same position. Take a break.
Another example: You feel ansy, you've just gotten to a party. You see someone you know and they come up to you, give you a hug and a kiss on your cheek. Before you know it, you're feeling welcome, warmed and somehow much more ready to mingle about. Maybe all you needed was a kiss on the cheek.
As an online shop, this may seem contradictory to be telling you NOT to buy things so first, we'd like you to consider the following:
1. With every object/item in the store, there will always be something for free. A resource, a poem, an idea, a piece of health advice, something that's a takeaway that won't cost you anything but your valuable valuable valuable attention space. THAT in itself is more precious than all the jewels you could ever buy.
2. We would much rather sell you "action items" versus finished products, see the ceramic "tool kit" or the "crafting kit" or the "break something kit".
3. Lastly and most importantly, we want to support artists we believe in. We want to sell work from people that we ourselves would actually want to buy from. We will only post items that we love and will vouch for.
Thanks for reading, I hope this makes sense and I hope you're using all your senses today.