When I was twelve years old, I had a conversation with my mom that I'll never forget. I was being my perfectionist self, trying to put together a flawless assignment for school. Somewhere in the middle of the poster board, I ruined it. I was completely disgusted with myself. Dad lifted his glasses, squinted, and I knew that the error looked as big to him as it did to me. After all, my perfectionist tendencies had been inherited from him.
I remember beating myself up about it for awhile. Dad, in keeping with his logical and pragmatic nature, spent some time analyzing ways I could draw lines and shapes around the error to make it less obvious. We both obsessed about it ad nauseam. After about an hour, mom walked in. She had clearly been listening from upstairs. She made us stop what we were doing, looked me in the eyes, and said, "Mistakes happen. That's why they made erasers."