The principal at my elementary school ruled against me skipping a grade ahead and so I remained stuck in first grade with second grade reading skills. (It should be noted here that second graders didn’t like me either — I was the annoying kid who knew all the answers and raised her hand all the time. No one likes that kid. Ever.) As I got older, school, naturally, became harder. In third grade, a girl named Danielle, who was smarter and prettier than me, became my first intellectual competitor. (Side note: This was a futile effort as she’s been valedictorian twice in her life and graduated from college with a degree in biophysics or biochemistry.) Constantly failing to be the best annoyed me enough at this point. Instead of my father assuring me that my best was enough, I got, “What happened to 100?” I never grew up thinking or knowing that if I got a “90,” it was an “A” and if that’s the best I could’ve done under the circumstances, then it was okay. If I got a 98, I always heard, “What happened to the other 2 points?” It was always A+ or 100 — never “at least you tried your best.” I began hiding tests that weren’t perfect from my parents — setting me up for a livelihood of perfectionism.