I was always a smart kid. Did very well on tests all through grade school, didn’t have to do much work because the work I did do suggested to my teachers that there wasn’t an issue. Just a couple missing worksheets, he’ll do fine. When I got to middle school, I took the usual approach to things, which, for me, was always to just do them. That had worked brilliantly before, so I kept right on going.
I failed. And I don’t mean I got an A- and fretted about it like an overachiever. I fully failed maths, test after test, almost ended up in remedial classes. Eventually I got it together, but years later I’ve accepted that among the things I have talent in, maths is not one of them. Learning that about myself was an important step. Learning it about others is also important, but sometimes it has the distressing but necessary side effect of disillusionment.
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