now, i know this is his initial gut reaction to most things he perceives as negative. in fact, it's an area we're working on at school because he has the occasional teary breakdown in class. given time he usually gets over it and it'll cease to bother him. so i went on and on about his excellent report card, effort is what matters, there's always room for improvement, blah, blah, blah.
but what he said after my spiel made me cringe because it was like listening to my inner self 20+ years ago:
me: so why are you sad?
ian: because it wasn't perfect ...
i've gotten to the point where i really don't care what his grades are; i'm much more concerned about his emotional state. when he's 30 years old it won't matter one iota what his grades were in first grade. but you can't convince my 6-year old that grades aren't the most important thing in the world (much less that it's hardly that important at all), and that i want him to have other things in his life that bring him happiness.