17 Pregnancy Milestones No One Tells You About
Congrats, Mama! Your pregnancy is underway and there are so many exciting and wonderful changes you’re charting and looking forward to. But here’s the thing: While you’re busily tracking Baby’s growth from the size of a lentil to the size of a watermelon, there are several important milestones that those week-by-week pregnancy guides miss. And that’s where we come in! From the silly to the sentimental, here are the unofficial pregnancy milestones that you really need to know about!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #1: The Positive Pregnancy Test
Maybe it was a late period, or an acute sense of smell, or perhaps you just had a feeling that something (err, someone!) was brewing. No matter what compelled you take that pregnancy test—wow—when you actually see those two lines they’ll take your breath away. Prepare to experience a combo of feelings, like utter disbelief, shock, joy, shock again, some more joy, and a dash of OMG!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #2: Your First Puke Session
You’ve heard of morning sickness, sure. And you figured, How bad could it really be? Then you spend your first morning hunched over the toilet, throwing up last night’s dinner. Chalk this milestone up as a no-fun preggo marker. At the same time—squee!—proof there’s a real baby in there!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #3: Your First Bump Photo
To be honest, the very first bump shot often occurs when there’s no actual bump yet. Don’t worry, it’ll come! Just remember: You need that no-bump-bump-picture in order to accurately track your belly growth month after month!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #4: Finally Telling Someone
Sharing your pregnancy news with someone other than your partner or doctor is exciting...and also kind of nerve wracking and life-changing. After all, once your mom or BFF knows, that means your pregnancy actually exists outside your home!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #5: The Social Media Announcement
You’ve known for a while, and your inner circle probably knows, too, but once your pregnancy is Facebook (or Insta or TikTok) Official…bring on the buckets of congrats and advice and love! (Here’s some inspo for sharing your pregnancy news.)
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #6: Maternity-Pants Time
Some moms-to-be are So Stoked to transition into maternity clothes, while others desperately hold onto their favorite pre-preggo jeans with a belly band, rubber bands, paper clips, and anything else recovered from the junk drawer. No matter which camp you’re in, finally sliding into that first pair of maternity pants will garner a big ol sigh of relief. Comfort, at last! (Elasticized denim for the win!)
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #7: Your First Craving
It’s not all pickles and ice cream! Your pregnancy food craving may be all about the salty and satisfying crunch of potato chips. You might experience an overwhelming urge to order take out Chinese food…every night. Or maybe you find yourself batting your lashes at your partner for late-night doughnut runs. No matter what food you desire, the craving will likely come out of nowhere! But know that you’re far from alone: Research shows that up to 90% of American moms-to-be have some type of food craving during pregnancy.
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #8: Water Works Arrive
Real talk: Pregnancy is emotional! So when our fave jeans don’t fit, your ankles resemble a pair of sausages, and you’re placed on another daycare waitlist…it’s totally okay (and expected) that the tears start flowing at unexpected times, like when you realize that you’re up-to-date on your streaming binge and have nothing good to watch. Hormones are fun!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #9: Hello, Breasts!
As your baby grows, so does your bump…and your boobs! The change is slow and steady and then, one day, you’ll catch a glimpse and—poof!—you’ll be all Is that me?? And the answer, of course, will be Yes!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #10: First Weird Pregnancy Dream
Hormones, heightened anxiety, or just an unexplained pregnancy side effect? Whatever the reason, most preggos wind up having at least a handful of very strange and very vivid dreams. Cool factoid: Many experience greater dream recall during pregnancy, so go ahead and grab the neglected journal and start writing them all down!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #11: Stranger Comments on Your Bump
Whether someone issues you a “Congrats!,” gives you their seat on the bus, or simply asks you when you’re due, a special kind of lightning bolt shoots up your spine when a stranger acknowledges your pregnancy. You suddenly realize that the world outside your world knows your news! Gah!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #12: Your First Purchase for Baby
The first time you wander into a baby store knowing that you’re shopping for your very own baby…well, that’s something! No matter if you pick up a cute outfit, a special blanket, or a bassinet, chances are you’ll remember that precious moment for a long time.
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #13: The Baby Name Drama
Selecting a baby name is rarely a smooth process. You make a baby name list. Your partner makes a baby name list. And all is well and good until…there’s zero list overlap or you despise your partner’s top choice. Or you realize the name you’ve been dreaming of is the name of your spouse’s ex—or your pregnant sister-in-law already called dibs on your pick. Or your mom says she’s thinks your top baby name select is “Fine.” Or you can’t find any name that speaks to you. The potential baby name drama list is endless! But in the end, guess what? Your sweet bub will have the perfect name!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #14: The Nesting Instinct
Even the chillest, least type-A mom-to-be out there will likely be struck with the all-encompassing desire to organize. You might not quite know how to handle this Marie Kondo-like feeling, but garbage bags, donation boxes, and cleaning supplies help.
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #15: “Where Are My Feet?”
Here’s the thing: Your cute bump will eventually reach proportions you couldn’t even imagine. And that means, one day, you’ll stand up, look down, and notice that your feet have disappeared. This is often followed by the first time you can’t bend over to pick something off the floor.
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #16: The Freak Out
Sure, you know you’re pregnant. You fully realize a baby is busily growing in your belly. You have the maternity pants and morning sickness to prove it! But that’s entirely different from having a full-blown existential mind-bend about the situation. It’ll hit you and hit you hard that you—the person who just ate cereal for dinner two nights in a row, who has killed roughly 14 houseplants, and who forgot to pack underpants on their last vacation—will be a parent, fully and wholly responsible for another living being. Ahhh!
Unofficial Pregnancy Milestone #17: “Is This Labor?!”
You can read a zillion pregnancy books and talk to all your friends who’ve been pregnant, but the truth is, you’ll never be quite sure when labor starts. Is this gas? Do I have to pee? Maybe it’s just a cramp? Did the baby just drop? Wait, is this labor? Wait, maybe it's Braxton Hicks? This parade of questions will likely dance through your head more than once…but just know that the answer will eventually be YES! It’s labor!
Curious what unofficial baby milestones lay in store for you and your baby? Find out!
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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider.