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All About Pregnancy

11 Parenting Milestones You Reach During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is 40 weeks because that’s how long it takes to grow a baby...and your future mom skills

You’ve probably already imagined how great it’s going to feel when your baby rolls over, or smiles, or walks for the first time. But the milestones start coming way before any of that. Might as well celebrate them all!

1. Aww! Mommy's first heartburn–caused by baby-induced reflux now, and broken curfews in about 15 years.

2. Placing someone's hand on your belly to feel the baby who's been kicking non-stop ALL DAY LONG, only to have him go still. (This will prepare you for the day you shop for organic yams, cook them, mash them, find the perfect sized spoon...only to be met with hermetically-sealed baby lips.)

3. You, at your baby shower, balancing the itty-bitty teeny-tiny bodysuit on your belly for the photo...and getting instantly nostalgic for the day when your baby grows out of them. Surely there is a German word for this feeling of already missing the thing that hasn’t happened yet.

4. Morning sickness: Excellent preparation for the family stomach flu that will happen five years from now.

5. Putting the backup batteries in your baby monitor, and realizing that this requires a screwdriver. Buy five because you’ll be repeating this any time you need to insert batteries for the foreseeable future.  

6. Making your first IRL mom-to-be friend with whom you have absolutely nothing in common except for your babies’ due dates. And it turns out that’s all you need. Friends for life!

7. The first time you feel your baby move and realize it isn’t gas. It’s an elbow, or a little foot!

8. The first time you call your mother and thank her for everything you never realized she did for you. Prepare to make this call regularly in the years to come. 

9. When your belly reaches that stage when it feels as hard and solid as your forehead. 

10. Some other person: “Oh you’re drinking coffee? I sure hope it’s decaf. Also are you sure those shoes are safe in this weather?” Deep breaths. You will use this breathing technique for years and years of “helpful” nosy intrusions.

11. TFW labor takes 27 hours—almost as long as it will take you to get your toddler's shoes on one day.

Lauren Smith Brody is the founder ofThe Fifth Trimester, which helps businesses improve workplace culture for new parents. Her bestselling book The Fifth Trimester: The Working Mom’s Guide to Style, Sanity, and Big Success After Baby was published last year.