#RAWmotherhood: Keisha Boutilier

Motherhood PPD PPA mama diaries

(Photo By Julie Christine Photography)

When I think back to when it all began for me I always thought it was that first moment I held my perfect daughter in my arms and felt that overwhelming feeling of content. But the more and more I think about it, I think that it was that first moment I held the positive pregnancy test in my hands. I never really realized how much I had wanted it until it was happening.

Over filled with joy, one day, it was like a light switch went off in my head with the “what if’s. They use to come once a day, then once an hour and increased to once every half hour. They haunted me every single day, from the moment i found out I was pregnant to every once in a while presently. You know the “What if’s” we all get them. What if something bad happens and I loose my baby, what if theres a car accident or something terrible happens to Drew. What if I die, what if Drew dies. What would I do, how would my family cope? Do I have a plan?

I can’t explain why but these emotions, feelings, thoughts just lingered. I held in my secret pregnancy until I was 18 weeks so scared that I would loose my sweet baby. I was so scared of something bad happening to her, to me. This went on until the days leading up to my labour, by then I had told everyone our great news but still those thoughts still haunted me. I had discovered a lump under my underarm at 8months and I thought for sure the worst. Cancer. I made my doctors appointment, and on the morning of my appointment I went into labour. I found out the next day that it was only a milk duct and milk had gathered under creating that lump. It was almost like the universe was laughing at me. Reminding me to chill the fuck out.

I just couldn’t shake those feelings no matter how hard I tried, and after having my two beautiful kids and amazing husband it insensified. I could never let anything happen to me or my kids. I became a helicopter mom, I made doctors appointments for health concern possible, except for the one that bothered me the most. My Post Partum Anxiety/ Depression. I didn’t even know it was a thing until one night my anxiety hit the roof to panic attack. Sweating palms, heart racing, can’t think straight….

I hit to the internet to search my newest fear and stumbled upon PPA/PPD. I never thought of myself depressed I actually felt good, but my anxiety did not. The more I searched the more I realized I was diagnosing myself and yes and I made a doctors appointment. Turns out, she told me theres nothing I can really do about it and it happens all the time to new moms. Not quite the answer I was looking for, so I knew it was in my own hands to combat this. Still not an easy task to do. But I knew as soon as my PPA habits starting rubbing off on my oldest son I had to take charge back into my life.

I asked for help, I begged for help, a sitter a day out whatever it was I took it. I mediated, but my biggest dig out of my slump was my blog. I will always be appreciative for this buisness I created that helped me see the light. I started to write, and write until my hands started to cramp up and seize. My husband came home one day with my computer around mothers day 2015 and told me to type my thoughts. I did and expanded my writing to an online blog.

Don’t get me wrong I’m by all means not cured, I just helped myself channel my fears into positive things. I feel it abruptly coming to the service I remind myself that I’m here today living life still with my beautiful family and nothing can take away my joy. I wanted to share my story in hopes that it may help one or two moms see the light to those emotions and feelings they may be experiencing and think nothing of it. It’s not something to be ignored or swept under the mat. It may happen to everyone but it doesn’t need to be treated like nothing, it can effect your whole world. Your kids, your day, your feelings.


Keisha is part of our new Mama Diary Series, #RAWmotherhood, that aims to provide purposeful portraits to break the “Instagram worthy” pictures of motherhood and be real for a moment. Thank you Keisha for supporting this campaign to unite and support mothers in their journey, postpartum. This initiative is to bring awareness and funds to BC Women’s Hospital Foundation as they continue the research and development of an app to treat PPD and PPA. Click here to find out how you can help.


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