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What a difference a trimester makes

Sometimes your second trimester of pregnancy is called the "Golden Trimester". Can I get an "Amen!" from my fellow Baby-growers! I mean it takes a lot out of a mama to help fuel a new human. You should get a caffeine-free latte extra whip for all that work. By now, most of baby's systems are in place. Limbs and organs are formed and functioning. They just need to grow and mature.

For many women, it's time to set aside the barf bags,and start thinking about diaper bags. And there is real relief associated with reaching mid-pregnancy, because the first trimester is certainly the most vulnerable for baby. Another latte, please.

During the second trimester, drastic changes will occur for you and your baby. Here are just a few of the biggies:

For you:

Expect to outgrow your jeans soon, if you haven't already. It's an excuse to buy a new wardrobe, or at least borrow something from a friend, like a rubber band to extend your waistband. Wear it proud, mama.

Somewhere between weeks 16 and 20, you should actually feel your first baby kick. It's really more like a below-the-belt flutter. Be glad. By the third trimester, that babe is romping all over your internal organs. The circus can get uncomfortable.

If you want to, you can also find out if you are carrying around a baby boy or girl. These days, a lot of people have the sonographer put the secret into an envelope, so you can have a big reveal party.

For Baby:

You think your body is changing? Those growing pains are just a baby step compared to the leaps and bounds your little one will conquer in the next few weeks.

All images provided by jeanette Burlbaw at Prenatal Imaging centers

Take a look at the before and after pictures. At week 13, baby is 3 ½ inches long and weighs about one ounce. By week 27, that munchkin has more than quadrupled his or her size. If you did the same, you would enter the homestretch weighing around 600 pounds!!!

Baby has eyelashes and eyebrows by 16 weeks, and is opening and closing their eyes by 25 weeks. Baby can even start to see a few inches in front of their face. Sight is not the only sense baby is perfecting. He or she can taste and hear by the end of this trimester.

All of this change and development is witnessed through recent improvements in ultrasound technology. We can see a baby's reaction when subjected to internal and external stimuli. For example, there are subtle changes in heart rates and sucking patterns when baby hears different voices or music. Sonographers and parents have watched babies at this age yawn, smile, frown or even cry based on circumstances inside and outside the womb.

While the first few weeks of pregnancy are focused on physical systems, now baby is starting to develop a personality with preferences…some based on what mama is enjoying. So sit back and bask in the glow of the "Golden Trimester". Round three is right around the corner. It involves nesting, swelling and burping up those lattes you are so enjoying now.

Carey Wickersham is the author of the book, The Wonder Within You. It's full of gorgeous images and videos of babies at every stage of development. To find out more go to

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Truman Medical Centers/University Health's Labor of Love app offers anytime, anywhere education powered by YoMingo®, a program designed to give you convenient access to valuable information. It includes the tools and support you need at every stage of your healthcare journey and beyond.

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