Our little guy was born at 10am this morning, exactly 24 hours after I lost my mucous plug. Contractions started right after I lost the plug and became more and more intense throughout the day. By nightfall I was in way over my head in terms of pain. It was more than I expected, but I know you other ladies will have better luck! I was never afraid of the process though, just way past my threshold with the pain. I rode it all day and especially all night and at 6:30 a.m. started feeling an urge to push on the end of the contractions. I was really relieved then, because I knew I had made it to second stage and we were getting somewhere. I felt his head for the first time probably around 9:30 and within another three or four contractions/pushes I had the head out. I was in the birthing pool. The rest of him shot out on the next contraction and I rolled over and picked him up. DH was weeping watching us, and I just couldn't believe I had made it. He started pinking immediately and is perfect. I didn't think I had torn, I told DH I hadn't, but when I checked I actually tore pretty badly. I'm planning on just letting it heal. I can't fathom having someone come over and stitch me up, it just sounds painful at the moment. His cord was super short, so we ended up cutting it before we had planned. I couldn't stand up with him or nurse him and the placenta hadn't come out after 30 minutes. He needed to get out of the pool to get warm and I was still having some pain, so we tied and cut the cord. Eventually, when I got out of the pool, almost an hour after he was born, I felt a little urge and pushed and the placenta flopped out. OK, that's enough for now. I'll write up the whole story eventually. Thanks for the inspiration and support, ladies!! UC rocks!