Letter to My High School Self: Ms. Karzin


Student, Journalism

Image reprinted with Ms. Karzin’s permission

Dear High School Hannah, 


Well, our worst fear came true. We became a high school English teacher. But wait! Don’t panic! We actually really like it. I know it’s hard to believe, since you were sooooo adamant that you would never end up being a teacher, but let’s be real: you always knew it was what you were meant to do. We tried to fight it, but in the end it was inevitable. You’re good at it, so you’re just going to have to get used to it. 


Life didn’t really go the way that you planned. And it’s hard, because I know how much you hate change, and how badly you want certain things, but you need to know now that you can’t control everything. The sooner you realize that, the happier you will be. Yeah, okay, maybe life didn’t go as planned, but it’s still a beautiful life. You have family and friends you love, fulfillment and stability. Dreams can change. Expectations can change. Life is not a race, and comparison is the death of happiness. Focus on who you are, and controlling what YOU can control, and I promise, everything will be fine. 


You don’t go to Chapman. You don’t even apply. You’re going to go to California Lutheran University and have so much fun you won’t even know what to do with yourself. You’re going to meet the most amazing people who will change your life. You will go through so much, learn more than you thought possible, and experience the worst heartbreak you thought imaginable, but it will still always have been WORTH IT. 


Spend more time with Peepaw. You’ll miss him so much when he’s gone. Call Mormor on your own, without Dad having to ask. She loves you so much, and it breaks her heart to live so far away from you. It’s not hard to make more of an effort to show the people you love that you love them. 


Keep singing. You’ll be really mad at yourself when your voice is out of shape. Try to find as much joy in every day as you can. Nothing is more important than joy, love, compassion and empathy. Find it, and you’ll find yourself. 


I love you! 


Always and forever,