The average pregnancy lasts approximately forty weeks. Some babies come a couple of weeks “early,” some a couple of weeks “late.” Forty weeks tends to be the accepted average, however.
Throughout your pregnancy, your body and baby will change gradually every day. The changes may not seem that dramatic until one day you scare yourself walking by a mirror or you suddenly realize your perfect fitting jeans are too snuck to button or you are starting to get comments from strangers about the size of your belly.
As slowly as the changes seem to happen over the typical nine months of pregnancy, there are certain “mile markers” that tend to divide the pregnancy into three distinct stages. These stages are referred to as “trimesters.” There are three trimesters. Each trimester is three months long. Each trimester comes with recognizable changes and developments for both mom and baby.
The second trimester starts at week thirteen and goes to week twenty-seven. Most mothers say this is when they feel the best. The first trimester hormone fluctuations have settled and you are enjoying the excitement of being pregnant and dreaming about the new life as a growing family. Baby’s organs are starting to practice working and some final processes are being laid prepared.
The third trimester begins at the twenty-eighth week and lasts until the birth of your baby. During this trimester, moms begin to feel ready to have the baby. You may start to become a bit anxious about labor but you are ready to see this little one you have been holding within you for so long. The physical changes in the third trimester also tend to become less fun and more irritating. Baby is getting his final touches and gaining weight. He is almost ready to come out and play.
Some people refer to the first three months after birth as the fourth trimester. This is due to the massive changes in both mom and baby. I will discuss in another post each of the three trimesters individually, however, I will also cover the “fourth trimester” as well. This time period is a very important part of becoming a mother. Unfortunately, it is often an ignored and forgotten about chapter.
Not everyone has the same experience in each trimester but these are often distinct enough times that a mother can clearly point to certain times in her pregnancy as being very different.
If you are in the Denton, TX area and are interested in hiring a doula for your birth experience, contact me today to schedule a free consultation. If you enjoyed this article, you may be interested in checking out my Comfort Measures in Labor page.