While on the one hand it seems like time has flown by, there are times when you feel like you have been pregnant forever! Especially with the emotional upheavals that pregnancy brings, and the anticipation growing by the minute, you may feel that time has come to a standstill. But you are almost two-thirds of the way done. Yes! You finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.

What’s happening with you

You have probably gained anywhere between 15 and 20 pounds (6.5 – 9.0 kgs) by now. This is just an average range and by no means indicates that anything under or over is a cause for alarm. The added baggage of your huge breasts, your growing uterus, your extra blood and all the fat that you are packing translates into a considerable weight gain.

Along with this weight gain, may come isolated pains it in the pelvis, back and shoulders. While Braxton Hicks contractions are normal, persistent contractions must be discussed with your doctor. Pre-term labor is a serious issue for certain women and the earlier it is addressed, the easier the rest of the pregnancy will be. Not addressing pre-term labor at the early stages may confine you to bed rest for the rest of your pregnancy.

Another inconvenience that is often not discussed is leaking urine when you sneeze, laugh or cough. This is referred to as incontinence, and although temporary can be embarrassing if not highly bothersome. To keep this problem under control, try Kegels exercises as recommended by your doctor. This will not only help you during labor but will also cause overall strengthening of your vaginal muscles.

Itchiness at this stage in the pregnancy can also be common. The raging hormones are once again responsible for this, and while there’s not much that you can do to prevent it, making sure that your skin is well hydrated at all times will keep your discomfort at a minimum.

What’s happening with your baby

week 26 of pregnancyYou might actually be surprised to know that your baby is capable of taking a breath at the end of this week. With your baby being fully capable of registering sound and light at this stage, you may find that your baby reacts very differently in a dark environment as compared to a bright and noisy room. In fact your baby will start to recognize your voice and respond by kicking excitedly.

You might feel silly talking to your tummy, but it has been done for centuries, so join the club. As the weeks go by your baby will even recognize your husband’s voice, so have him join you, even if you both feel silly doing it initially.

Your baby is now 1 2/3 pound (about 720 gms) in weight, and measures 14 inches and with all that furious brain development, you may be surprised at how much your baby has been paying attention to your voices in the womb when he or she smiles back at you knowingly.