Zahra’s Full Story: Finding True Happiness After Panic Attacks, Addiction, and Divorce

How Talk Therapy and Meditation Transformed One Woman’s Life 

Amidst a heart-wrenching divorce, overwhelming panic attacks, and a gripping painkiller addiction, Zahra teetered on the brink of despair. When all seemed lost, Madeline emerged, leading Zahra on a journey of healing, inner peace, and self-discovery.

Zahra’s Life Before Therapy

Zahra had just gotten divorced. Engaged at 18, she spent most of her youth unhappily married, raising two young children in a highly restrictive Muslim community. 

Growing up in this culture scarred her with childhood trauma.

There were things that I didn’t even know were affecting me. I didn’t understand what was wrong with me.

In Zahra’s world, therapy was looked at with deep shame. She was suffering, and even in the US, couldn’t find the help she needed. She was also questioning her religious beliefs.

With the shattered image of the life she’d once dreamt of, her self-worth plummeted. She fell into a new relationship that didn’t align with her values.

The weight of it all was suffocating her, living with anxiety and panic attacks daily. 

She was unable to be present for her kids. By 2013, she was on the brink of a nervous breakdown.

What Caused Zahra to Seek Help?  

Her religion, which should have been a source of solace, felt more like a cage. She was torn between her beliefs and the life she wanted. 

This created friction in her relationships, especially with her mother. Zahra needed an outlet, but there was nowhere to turn. 

“I was having anxiety attacks. I did see a couple of therapists…  but I just didn’t feel like I could open up.”

Feeling very alone, she was also the sole responsibility of her children, wrestling with financial woes.

If it all weren’t enough, a sudden back injury led her down a dark path: painkiller addiction. She couldn’t quit for years, initially clueless that her body could become addicted. 

“When you’re so lost and you can’t be present for these kids, you’re in a very dark place, because it impacts them, too.”

As a single mom, the option of rehab was out of reach. The chaos inside her inevitably spilled over, affecting her family. 

I remember one night getting scared that I might not wake up the next day.

Zahra Meets Madeline and Finds Relief

At the age of 37, Zahra’s life changed. 

She crossed paths with Madeline and felt at ease with her as soon as they met. 

Through meditation and talk therapy, she began to heal.

Zahra says guided meditation was her favorite tool. “I use it whenever I have challenges because I can quiet my mind and then listen to it.”

One word: Trust. I finally had someone who was completely objective and compassionate to sit there, just hear me out, and validate what I’m saying.

The positive ripple effect of therapy began to help manage her family life. 

“My kids were going through their teenage years. Those are the hardest. A mom has to be present for that.” 

She began to transition away from her religious beliefs while maintaining ties with her mother. 

“Madeline made it a safe place for me to open up, discuss, and be able to accept myself without my religion. Over time I started to feel free of guilt and fear of hell.”

Madeline soon introduced her to Christina Maria, an herbalist who helped her overcome her pain pill addiction without resorting to rehab. Christina can be contacted at

“Thinking back, if Maddie wasn’t there, I don’t know if I would be alive today.”

Zahra Recovers, Transforming Her Life for the Better

Zahra recovered from her addiction. She emerged stronger, more independent, and rooted in self-love. 

“The thing I loved the most was becoming so strong, not being needy. I can stand on my own or be with my boyfriend. I can be single, and I will be okay.”

For the first time, she was able to have a healthy conversation with her ex-husband about their kids. The animosity she once had toward him turned into understanding. 

This was the moment she realized a fundamental shift was happening inside of her. Zahra hopes to pass on the blessing by recommending others to Madeline for therapy. 

You gotta go to Madeline. She’ll change your life.

“The biggest thing Maddie did was show me that I’m a good person. That I’m okay. That I’m worthy of love and that I can love myself.”

Zahra reminisces about her favorite things about working with Madeline. 

“She’s just there, and I can trust in that compassion from her, knowing that she’s there for the good of me. She’s not just doing a job or finishing a session with a client.”

Her favorite thing was being able to enjoy life and be present. 

“That’s the most priceless gift anyone can have, to be able to have those moments and know what true, true happiness is.” 

About Madeline’s Unique Approach to Therapy

Madeline’s goal is to help others achieve personal growth and healing by embracing authenticity, understanding their internal narrative, and connecting with nature.

Zahra’s willingness to be open allowed Madeline to provide intuitive insights tailored to her needs. It also helped her grow as a therapist. 

The opportunity to be met with her story invited me to know and understand things I wouldn’t have known anything about.”

When tackling Zahra’s unique challenges, Madeline highlights that “there was a story or conditioning that was compromising her acceptance of herself.”

Madeline clarifies that her role was never to persuade Zahra to abandon her religion.

Instead, she sought to help Zahra forge a spiritual path authentic to her essence.

I went to her house, I met with her mother because I wanted them to know that I was not trying to push down her family or her way, I was inviting Zahra to what makes her feel alive inside.

Madeline asserts that experiences, no matter how daunting, are essentially classrooms. The lessons therein provide us with wisdom. 

To explore these experiences, she uses talk therapy. She listens deeply to her clients, allowing them the space to vent without judgment.

“When we’re activated in the drama of a story, sometimes we’re not able to listen clearly… 

After talking, we would often do meditation. It’s just creating a pathway to your stillness so you can integrate whatever’s happened.”

Madeline expands on therapeutic meditation, a critical tool for Zahra. 

“I use it to see what’s between us, like what’s in the spaces. I combine this with drumming to get Zahra into almost a Theta state.”

A Theta state is a brainwave frequency that allows one to connect with the unconscious part of their mind, normally only present during sleep, meditation, or deep relaxation.

I use drumming, breath, sound, and songs I might sing or things I might say. This helps deepen the process for Zahra so that we can integrate our learning into her subconscious.

These sessions were very important for Zahra’s healing. Her conflicted life made it difficult to access deep relaxation. 

They provided her with an opportunity to unearth her innate wisdom and reconnect with herself, discovering many of her answers to long-sought life questions. 

“It’s more like she’s directing me. Not telling me, but directing me,” Zahra recounts.  

Madeline’s approach is not just about addressing surface-level problems. 

It’s about diving deep, transcending norms and expectations, and helping individuals rediscover their authentic selves. 

“Madeline doesn’t have your traditional, conventional way of therapy, but give her a chance. She can change your life.” - Zahra S.

Key Results for Zahra

Conquered panic attacks and achieved a natural recovery from addiction.

Began healing from divorce, resulting in improved relationships. 

Released restrictive beliefs to embrace her truth. 

Enhanced mental presence for her kids, anchored in inner peace. 

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