These two ideals: perception and reality live in tandem inside of us all the time. Each of us seeing the world around us in unique ways. Perceiving events uniquely. Hearing words and interpreting them individuality shaping our schema and ethos daily. We think we are in sync with others only to find we are slightly off the beaten track. We say what we feel or what we mean and hold back others. We seek attention and acceptance at times but also require solitude and to "fly under the radar." Perception, what we think we see. Reality, what is actually there. Does it actually matter? If it does not change the outcome can perception be good enough?
Watching my children interact, seeing them react to the same problem, the same dilemma and responding in very different ways. For instance, a cup of spilled milk on the kitchen floor: my oldest, look what you did you are going to have to clean that mess up. Its a huge mess. Actually it is a small cup of milk, barely a mess, a single paper towel will clean it up. My second oldest, you spilled it, I am not cleaning it up. My next in line, simply walks away pretending it didn't happen. Doesn't say a word, simply in his reality, no mess. Finally my youngest, asks for a paper towel so his older brother can clean it up. He accepted the mess and was willing to nudge someone else to actually clean it up. He spilled it but still young, expects others to actually clean up the spill but at least he will get a paper towel to help, taking somewhat the responsibility.
Reality- spilled milk. Perception...well...varied. But truly it depends on the situation. If it was a chocolate chip cookie at the center of this story it would have been claimed and eaten. No questions or conversation needed.