When I was 14, I enjoyed my maths lessons as much as I enjoyed English and French. There was a neatness to maths.
There was nothing subjective or relative. The answer was right or wrong.
And for the first two years of my secondary schooling, my answers were mostly right. I was nowhere near the top of the class but I was a solid A- and B+.
But when I entered fifth form, everything changed - including my teacher. I have absolutely no doubt she was a brilliant mathematician.
She and the truly brainy girls in the class seemed to understand one another, but I was left floundering.
Where before the methods and the answers were obvious to me, now they were increasingly opaque. I felt that I was in a fog by the end of the year.
It wasn't that I had become distracted by boys (fat chance at our Catholic boarding school) and I wasn't putting in the effort - I was trying, I really was.
But I became increasingly frustrated hard work didn't mean I got results so when I scraped through School C maths (56 per cent, from memory), I gave up maths forever. But I missed it.
And I've always regretted we parted ways all those years ago.
One of my goals for 2017 is to find a tutor and get myself up to a basic level of proficiency maths-wise.
I imagine, however, that tutors will be a scarce commodity given the appalling results of Kiwi kids in an international test.
The Trends in International Maths and Science Study tested Year 5 and 9 students in 57 countries over 2014 and 2015.
So fairly comprehensive, then.
And New Zealand's 10-year-olds had the worst results of any English-speaking countries in maths - and they were pretty dismal at science, too.
Our results were much the same as last time, in 2010.
But where other countries pulled their socks up and improved, we stayed the same, resulting in the poor performance.
Adding insult to injury, the gap between the highest and lowest achievers had increased since 2010.
These results came in the same week it was announced the New Zealand Qualifications Authority was launching an independent review after multiple errors were found in NCEA maths exams - at every level.
Mistakes happen in every job, but it's hard to see how these errors could have ended up in the exam papers. According to the website, NZQA's exam-setting process takes about 18 months.
The exam paper is written according to the requirements of the standard being assessed and the paper is reviewed by at least three critiquers.
So at least four people, presumably those at the top of their game, saw the exam papers and none picked up the mistakes.
If they're the people overseeing the delivery of maths into our classrooms, no wonder kids are failing.
I also wonder whether the right people are in the classrooms. Being brilliant at maths doesn't make you a brilliant teacher.
You need empathy and great communication skills to be able to teach.
You need to be able to spark a child's interest, if not passion, for a subject.
Simply bunging a person with an impressive academic CV in front of a classroom is no guarantee the children will learn.
We all remember the names of the great teachers we had at school, no matter how old we are.
But we also remember the names of those who let us down.
Kerre McIvor is on NewstalkZB, weekdays, noon-4pm.