I guess we don’t have to see everything the same to love each other.

In case you don’t already know about it, ask Google this question.

“What color is the dress?”

It will either show you a picture of a gold and white dress or a black and blue dress — it all depends on who you are. It is the same picture and it is the same dress in the picture, but a different perspective.

I saw the white and gold dress, while Shawn saw blue and black. Then it came out in real life that the dress is blue and black and I still haven’t lived that down.

“You think we need to turn down the thermostat? You thought the dress was white and gold too.”

It happened again last night when an audio image popped up on my newsfeed asking which of two words I heard: Yanny or Laurel. So we gathered around my phone (because in 2018 that’s what we call family time) and tried to decipher what we were hearing.

A computerized, kind of creepy voice, repeated the word about three to four times, and I absolutely know what I heard.

“Yanny,” I said.

“Laurel for sure,” Shawn said.

Go figure.

We were listening to the same audio, yet heard something totally different at the same time.

I feel like this explains a lot about our life together. Sometimes we can be in the exact same situation, yet see or hear two totally different things.

Like the other day when we were shopping and I was talking to a friend. I perceived his attitude as rude and quite overdramatic as he loudly threw boxes of forty-five cent macaroni and cheese into the cart.

He didn’t find it rude, but perceived himself as on-task and said, “I’m just getting done what we came here to do.”

It was the same situation but two totally different perceptions of it, although one seemed to be a rather ineffective excuse to stay out of the doghouse in my opinion.

Then on ride home from Walmart trip we were again totally out of sync. Because when I told him let me out of the car and that I wanted to walk home, he perceived that I was serious. And I perceived it as a good chance for him to apologize.

He hears Laurel. I hear Yanny. He sees a blue dress. I see a white one. And now here I am walking home from Walmart, because we just can’t seem to see eye to eye.

When people stop to talk to me in Walmart, even though I do suffer from social anxiety and chronic awkwardness (I’m pretty sure that’s a thing) I see it as rude not to stop and talk.

Shawn on the other hand, sees it as perfectly acceptable to wave his hand, say hello, and proceed to the next item on his list. 

Because even if I actually had a list, and by some miracle didn’t leave it sitting at home on the kitchen countertop, when I see a person in the store who wants to talk, I am going to talk.

Fuming and watching his big orange Hummer disappear into the distance (thankfully we only live a few streets over from Walmart anyway) I wondered how in the world we could possibly see life so totally different yet love each other at the same time.

Truth is, I guess we don’t have to see everything the same to love each other. I don’t understand the science behind all of these crazy things I’ve been telling you about, but I know it’s real. My eyes and ears truly perceive something completely different than his do.

And if this is legit, then maybe all of our other disagreements are too. Not only that, but perhaps all of our differences around the world are based on the fact that we see things and hear things differently in some way.

This isn’t to say that there aren’t clear lines between right and wrong — that could cause mass chaos if we allow those to blur. I just think it’s a good idea to remember we all come from our own perspectives before we get into an argument over something petty.

Or before you get out and walk home (at least it was a nice day).