21 Weeks Pregnant

Pregnancy week 21 fetus
length ~ 10.8 in  |  27.5 cm     weight ~ 12.7 oz  |  360 g   /   Look Mommy, I'm dreaming!

Fetal development in week 21

Your beautiful little miracle-gro baby will be putting on a full ounce and a half this week.

And that's just the beginning! Within the next five weeks, they'll really be packin' it on as they start to gain fat!

For now, we’re pleased to report the addition of rapid eye movement (REM); a key component to any healthy baby's sleep schedule, that indicates they're now capable of dreaming.

Over in the dermatology department: your sweet lil bun's thin soft skin is very red, rather translucent, and a bit wrinkled.

Not to worry, it’s not some creepy premature aging disease. It's just their clever little body setting them up with extra space that will smooth out once your little one starts packing on the baby-fat. That won’t be for a few more weeks, though.

So, for the time being, your munchkin is still a little lean mean growing machine!

Lastly, the beginnings of what is commonly called “brown fat” is just starting to fill in to help your baby retain some body heat, which is crucial as they’re not yet capable of regulating their own body temperature.

And how's mom doing?

We're smack in the middle of trimester two and you're in the full swing of baby-growin'.You can feel fluttering little kicks, but your womb-hijacker hasn't yet grown to their full-sized unholy proportions that'll leave you feeling like a pregnant whale with legs

Most moms are feeling pretty good right about now. You can feel fluttering little kicks, but your womb-hijacker hasn't yet grown to their full-sized unholy proportions that'll leave you feeling like a pregnant whale with legs.

You may already be noticing some mild uterine contractions — don’t panic, this is completely normal. It's also normal not to have them.

Actually, your uterus contracts throughout your whole life — only now that there’s enough pressure on the uterine muscles can you feel the contractions.

Have you started thinking about breastfeeding your child?

If this is your first pregnancy, one of the things that you'll have to be ready for, is having your breasts be your baby's primary food source for their first year.

For reasons that aren't entirely clear, much of North America decided that breastfeeding was for the poor and weird back in the sixties.

Formula became the culturally preferred option despite there being absolutely no evidence that it was indeed better for infants.

As scientists began to compare formula and breast milk - made by your body which built your baby cell by cell, they found overwhelming evidence that breast milk is superior to every brand of formula out there.

We'll cover this in more depth next week, but suffice it to say, unless you're physically incapable of breastfeeding, you should be preparing yourself for this very unique feeding relationship with your infant.

Did You Know?

There is always the risk that pregnant women end up with varicose veins. The American Institute of Preventive Medicine offers the following advice to avoid getting varicose veins: wear elastic support stockings, elevate your legs (above the heart) when resting, and take long & short walks every 45 minutes during long flights or car rides. And finally (obvious for pregnant women) avoid standing for extended periods.

Pregnancy Psycho-Meter

How are you feeling at 21 weeks pregnant?
  • Great: 8526 votes
  • Pretty Good: 10535 votes
  • Just Okay: 3203 votes
  • Not So Grand: 1356 votes
  • Ugh Bad: 1048 votes
Week 21 cartoon