What will happen during this pregnancy?

You have 40 fascinating weeks ahead of you. This is a very special time which is unique to you. You may have a feeling of serenity, excitement and happiness combined with many other new and intense feelings. You are now carrying the great gift of life within you - your child.

Pregnancy is a unique experience and it is divided into three trimesters or stages (1st trimester weeks 1 to 12, 2nd trimester, weeks 13 to 26, 3rd trimester weeks 27 to the end of your pregnancy). It is understandable for you and your partner to experience a combination of emotions.

Full of anticipation
Time for your body to adjust – the first trimester of pregnancy

From the first day or fertilisation, your body starts to adapt to being pregnant. The first weeks and months are marked with the body adjusting to this new and complex situation. Externally your body hasn’t changed yet – there are no obvious signs that you are pregnant and life could continue as before were it not for the fact that your body is going through extensive changes: your breasts may have become more sensitive or are tight. You get tired more easily and your morning routine seems to take longer. Your heartbeat is faster and you may get out of breath more easily: your feelings and emotions may go haywire. Many women are unsure if they are doing everything correctly and perhaps wonder whether they are ready for this new challenge. These are perfectly normal anxieties that every newly pregnant woman experiences.

You may also become sensitive to some smells, develop an aversion to certain foods or have an increased appetite. In addition, you may suffer from ‘morning sickness’ or feel nauseous during the day, which often occurs during the first trimester of pregnancy. Don’t worry, these symptoms will soon fade – after 12 to 19 weeks you should regain your feeling of wellbeing.

New life is growing within you. 
Relax and enjoy.

The second pregnancy trimester is a time of well-being. Hopefully any sickness feelings will have passed, your tummy is starting to expand but is still not very noticeable. For weeks you have known that you are carrying a new life within you – and now you can feel it! At first it feels like having gentle butterflies in your stomach which gradually become more intense over time. It is predominantly at night when your body is relaxed that you are aware of your baby's movements.

It is good to know that when your baby moves, it is a good sign. Our emotions are driven by our hormones: these are sometimes happy hormones or they can be stress hormones. In your womb, your baby experiences these hormonal stimuli in a protected environment and so it is already familiar with a spectrum of emotions when it encounters these later as a small child. Your baby grows and develops – your tummy gets rounder, your waist disappears and because of the increased blood flow, many women perspire more easily. There are other practical matters to consider:

What kind of cot will fit into our home; should we go for a pram or a baby sling, or both? Where will you have the baby, a maternity unit at your local hospital, or perhaps a home birth? Decide what feels right for you and discuss these matters with your GP or midwife.

The excitement is growing.
The third pregnancy trimester has arrived and with it comes the time of changes.

Only a few weeks to go to the birth! Only four percent of all babies are born on the due date. Some arrive earlier and others need a little longer before they are ready to leave the comfort of Mum’s womb. Take it easy during the last weeks of pregnancy. Now is the time to relax as often as possible and enjoy this time with your partner.  The two of you very soon will be three!

You are actively looking forward to holding your baby in your arms. You may find towards the end of your pregnancy that it’s difficult to get comfortable in bed. During the day your back aches or it is tiring to stand. Your baby is perhaps pressing on your bladder and you need to visit the loo more frequently; you can hardly wait until you can give birth. Nevertheless, consciously make the most of this time, the baby will arrive very soon!