What to Expect? -Melanie A.

In the book of “Get Me Out: A History of Childbirth from the garden of Eden to the Sperm Bank”, author Randi Hutter Espstein did not discuss the process of pregnancy. So, what is the process of pregnancy (meaning towards the fetal development)?

Fetal Growth/Development

The women ( birth-giver) carries her baby around 40 weeks (there can be complications that can lead the baby to being born prematurely or more later on than the due date), those 38 weeks are divided into three trimesters. From week to week, or month to month the baby is experiencing quite a lot of drastic changes physically. Not only is the baby experiencing some changes, but also the birth-giver is experiencing some changes physically inside their body. Before the baby is actually a physical baby, it started as a zygote then onto a blastocytos, morula, embryo, then fetus.

Trimester 1

Month 1: During month 1 the baby’s heart starts to begin for the first time and also the nervous/digestive systems are starting to form. Physically, the baby’s ears  and eyes start to become visible but they are not totally developed, yet.

Month 2: During month 2, the embryo begins to develop a large head, while the brain is very slowly appearing physically. More physical characteristics start to show, such as their toes and fingers appear. Not only is it called an embryo, but it could be classified as a fetus.

Month 3: During month 3, the baby’s face has appeared more than usual, genitals appear too (identify the sex), and the excretory system develops rapidly at a fast pace.

Month 4: The baby will start to begin physically moving and the integumentary system has taken an effect on the baby’s physical appearance. the skin, nails, and hair start to apppear.

Month 5: This is the month where mothers enjoy because the heartbeat is audible. Not only, the heart beat is audible but the brain begin to develop at a faster pace and the lung sacs start to develop too.

Month 6: The baby’s eyes have slowly completed and now, the eyes are able to open. It takes a long time for the eyes to develop completely. The baby’s figure is starting to look more bigger and it gets bigger and bigger, each month.

Month 7: The baby has finally, fully developed but it stills needs to be inside its womb. Some mothers have their baby at this early stage, but it is born prematurely. Even though, the baby has fully developed, it is still growing inside.

Month 8/9: Everything inside the baby has fully developed, meaning all the organ systems are ready. Fat slowly accumulates the baby, and it is ready to be pushed out and go into the new world.

Mother’s Experience: The mother experiences nausea and eventually, throws up and she could experience some tiredness, cravings for food, mood swings and etc. The mothers’ physical appearance can change, she is going to experience some weight gain and it’s natural to gain some pounds.  For example:her breasts might appear more larger. A lot of physical changes are happening over time during her pregnancy .

Ready to be Born

Reflection: Knowledge of pregnancy changes my perspective on birth, labor, and delivery in many different ways. I’ve come to realize that a lot of things are happening inside of you, and not many people notice it unless they are actually experiencing it. Everyone, sees a mother physically gaining weight and a bump becoming larger every month, but slowly the baby’s physical appearance is starting to develop and all the organ systems are developing. Also the knowledge of birth teaches me that there are very difficult things that the mother experiences due to the baby slowly growing, for example: the baby compresses the birth-giver’s bladder which causes her to frequently urinate. Having the knowledge of birth, prepares you during your pregnancy and teaches you, what is yet to come during your pregnancy time.

Learn to Love Pregnancy



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