by Shannon Bartlett
Welcome to the "honeymoon" phase of pregnancy. You're probably feeling hungrier, more alive and with your new curves you might feel sexier than ever.
Your baby's been busy growing, too. The organs will mature during this trimester and your baby will practice breathing and swallowing. Even the kidneys are getting some practice. Everything is growing so fast that by the end of the second trimester your baby will almost double in length!
See how your wee one changes in the week-by-week view of fetal development, or click to learn more about pregnancy at 15 weeks, 16 weeks, 17 weeks, 18 weeks, 19 weeks, 20 weeks, 21 weeks, 22 weeks, 23 weeks, 24 weeks, 25 weeks, 26 weeks or 27 weeks. If you're a member, you can customize your dates and follow along with the Pregnancy Calendar, too!
During the second trimester, your hormones even out, and your mood stabilizes about the same time your belly begins to pop out! Let's see what's going on right now!
Sometime this trimester you'll feel your baby's motions. Your little one has been moving, twirling and kicking for weeks, but now has grown large and strong enough for you to feel and "see" what's going on in your womb.
At first you'll probably notice a fluttering sensation, like the inside of your belly's being gently stroked with a paint brush. You might not even be sure you're feeling the baby yet.
Soon after the "butterflies," you'll get some solid kicks that convince you this tiny child has dreams of a soccer career or plans to specialize in dance. When you see a foot push out or your belly undulate, it's a nifty reminder of the miracle inside you.
Pregnancy Symptoms: You might notice you have more energy and feel better about now. Many women notice that around week 16 of pregnancy the waves of nausea and fatigue come to an end. If they haven't yet, give it some time. If the nausea doesn't end, it's best to consult your healthcare provider for options.
As your body and baby continue to grow, you could experience additional symptoms like skin changes, swelling, backache, stuffy nose, heartburn, constipation and hemorrhoids. Other pregnancy changes like your shoe size getting larger and vision changes might surprise you as well.
Your Emotions: When your bump pops out and you feel the baby move, your pregnancy begins to feel more exciting and real. You might also find yourself wondering if you'll be a good mother and how parenthood will change you (if at all). How different will things be when this baby is born? You'll have to wait and find out!
Physical Changes: Finally! You no longer look a like you've put on a few pounds. People can actually tell you're pregnant! Break out the maternity clothes and show the world you've got a baby on board. Most women this trimester feel pregnant, but not so big as to be uncomfortable -- yet.
Weight Gain: If your pregnancy started out at a normal weight, your midwife or doctor will probably suggest you gain approximately one pound a week during the second trimester.