Breaking The Cycle of Repeat- Building New Memories




If you had another chance to live, what will you do? I’ll revisit all the places that brought me joy, my childhood home, my neighborhood in Pakistan, the local mosque, the local market, park and beautiful people.


“What we call chaos is just patterns we haven’t recognized. What we call random is just patterns we can’t decipher.”

~Chuck Palahniuk 

Dear Readers,

My sincerest apologies for the delay in updating the blog. This year we had many inspiring stories, but due to some reasons we were unable to bring them to you. I’ve also been little quiet on blogging about Turkey side of things, it’s a work in progress – but be sure to check out all of our other posts!  I hope you’ll find the post below inspiring. Breaking The Cycle of Repeat- Building New Memories



Second Chance at Life and Recovery – What Will You Do With It? I’ll revisit all the places that brought me joy, my childhood home, my neighborhood in Pakistan, the local mosque, the local market, the  park I played in and appreciate everything life has to offer.

Those were the words I uttered when ED had completely taken me down. I had relapsed and relapsed so badly that I thought my chances of survival were zero.

Though, mentally I was coherent, physically the strength was all gone. I was in much agony and pain, I could no longer walk and everything from my hands to my feet hurt badly.  I was waiting for the death to come. It’s shocking how I could not seem to make my mind understand that I needed to gain weight for survival. The fear of weight gain was bigger than dying.

With the relapse, I started to  reminisce about the past and life back then. I couldn’t get the images out of my mind. Those were happy years, those were years free from the slavery of Eating Disorder. Every day something new was happening and I was racing fast in life. I had goals and a list of things to do, but then came ED and things changed.

With Eating Disorder everyday was a same old day. Every second of the day was spent in same dark agony with little ray of light. For years I repeated the same day over and over again, hours turned into days, days into weeks, weeks into months and months into never ending years. I forgot the time, my age and everything else in between.

With the relapse (this was after an extensive treatment at ED centre), I would think about the life after and how I will be questioned about my body and the harm I had inflicted on this gift of God and it was these thoughts that made me get up everyday, turn to God and take care of myself.

Islam tells us your time of death is fixed and it wasn’t my time to go.

Somehow slowly slowly I started to pull out and as weight increased, so did the strength in my body. I also discovered through a difficult lesson  there is a way to escape the repeating.


A lifetime isn’t forever, so take the first chance, don’t wait for the second one! Because sometimes, there aren’t second chances! And if it turns out to be a mistake? So what! This is life! A whole bunch of mistakes! But if you never get a second chance at something you didn’t take a first chance at? That’s true failure.

-C. JoyBell C.

Today, I offer thanks to Allah for everything. I am mostly grateful for my mind, which is healthy with healthy thoughts. Few years back, my answer would be, you can never change Eating Disorder mind, it’s impossible, but now I know anything in life is possible.

The best advice I was given was in Turkey,

“See each day as a new day.

So, if we evaluate new things we encounter according to our old records we will be curtained from the originality of the new, claiming

“There is nothing new”!

But the truth is, “There is nothing old!”

For, He is forever manifesting Himself anew at every instance! He doesn’t revise and recreate the old!

Ahmed Hulusi

Breaking The Cycle of Repeat- Building New Memories


Every moment of your life is a second chance.

-Rick Price

Now here in my home town, I retrace my memories. My aim is not to relive the past, because many things from the past are forgotten, but to revisit the old places to offer thanks to Allah for blessing me with so much and to build new found memories based on gratitude.


Everyday I step out I discover something new and this is a pure joy of life.






Discovering the beauty of morning walks all over again. Every walk I took, I discovered something new. Alhamdulilah!


pakistan-sunset pakistan-jogging

Discovering this beautiful mosque. A house of God can be built anywhere. Here the workers come and pray and get blessed.



Discovering this shop and how Fruitella here is 5 rupees cheaper than other shops. I love it.

pakistan-sweet-shop sweets fruitella

Discovering this man who sells best french fries in the world.  His honesty and his integrity is what makes him popular among many.




Coming across these smiling children. They are children of light, care free, full of love , light and blessings. They light up my day. Their strength and courage gives us strength. They are so happy.

pakistan-children-2 pakistan-children children-islamabad

This amazing Afghan bread, baked in clay oven everyday, sprinkled with sesame seeds is one of my staples of diet and this place has been here for over 25 years now.

pakistan-naan pakistan-clay-oven

The joys of seeing this man and hearing his call. Every morning when sun hasn’t risen yet and it’s still dark out there, he comes to my neighborhood calling people to prayer, his call; ‘prayer is better than sleep’. No weather affects him. He’s always there. He sings praises of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and speaks of soul’s longing for the City of Medina, where Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is buried.


Discovering this man again, in 2010 I drove him insane. I would visit him daily and would stand on his weight scales, asking him ‘are you sure this scale is accurate’? He’s so inspiring and so humble. Every morning he comes here with his scales, not once I’ve seen him ask anyone to come and be his customer. He’s quiet. Whatever you give him, he accepts.



Discovering this childhood mosque. I was ED free and I completed my Quran here. It was different then under construction and now it’s all very beautiful and I am just so proud of it.



This amazing fresh yogurt, the best yogurt in Islamabad. This has been here for 30 years. The taste is still same, still unique and people queue here to buy this yogurt.



Discovering another mosque within 2 mins walk from my house. It’s beautiful and full of blessings and often I see people, workers, people from all walks of life dining outside on ground.


Discovering the joys of month of Rabi-ul-Awal. The streets lit up. People’s faces lit up and there was food everywhere.


pakistan-rabiul-awal pakistan-rabi-ul pakistan-celebrations

Opportunities multiply as they are seized.

-Sun Tzu

Life is simple. Keep it simple. I’ve lived in Pakistan on and off for so long and yet I discover something new everyday and it’s beautiful.


Not everyone gets a second chance. If you do get one, take advantage of it because it’s a gift, and it may be something better than you had before!

-Nishan Panwar


My Message: Step Out- Break The Chain and Enjoy the Blessings of Life. Everyday is a new day. These people are your best teachers, everyday you’ll learn something beautiful something new. (I loved how these people were socializing on shoe menders makeshift shop on street. They all were full of joy and happiness. )



“Within tears, find hidden laughter
Seek treasures amid ruins, sincere one. ”

― Rumi




About Author

Islam and Eating Disorders founded in 2012 – run by Maha Khan, the blog creates awareness of Eating Disorders in the Muslim world, offers information and support for sufferers and their loved ones.

1 Comment

  1. Caro Maurizio Cortese, da assidua lettrice della gazzetta dico che se il gambero ha sbagliato a non includere pizzaioli napoltani nella guida sbagliate anche voi a non parlare mai di quelli romani, ficraiumogi di quelli del nord!

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