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I am not savvy enough to do a poll so I thought I'd just ask. how did your labors begin? Did you:
--have bloody show?
--lose your mucous plug?
--have lots of BH ctx. that worked up slowly?
--did your water break early on?
--have diarrhea or other GI symptoms?
--some other sign I am forgetting?

With DS, I tried a bazillion "natural" induction techniques because he was past 42 weeks. Maybe because of this, or perhaps because I was a FTM, I had BH for weeks so it was really hard for me to say for sure when labor "began"!

--I didn't have bloody show until I was in seriously active labor, like I knew I was at least a 4 and had been sent home from the birthing center, and it was in the 5 hour window between then and when I showed up pushing.
--I don't ever remember losing or seeing my mucous plug
--my bag of waters did not break until I was a "10" and began pushing. It broke on my first "real" push

I've been having BH all week. For the record, I'm 39w3 today, but trying not to get my hopes up (xakana, I know you've been having BH for weeks now) They are exhausting, physically and emotionally! Some of them are bad enough I can't walk, but they never "go" anywhere. I can always talk or breathe through them, and yet they make my "butt" hurt (I have trouble describing that "spot" where you feel baby pressure and opening, for me it never feels like my vagina but rather like my butt bones are spreading witha lot of pressure, which I guess they are)

Just about 3 per hour for days on end, and changing activity always makes them subside or feel better for a few hours. I'm hoping this isn't like with DS where I have them for so long and so many days that I can't even tell when labor really begins. I'm trying to remember they are still doing something, even if it's not labor.

Although, as my Mom always says: when you're really in labor you don't have to ask "could I be in labor?" ha ha ha!
 

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Well, I was overdue. So the plan that night was to have sex, shoot for the big O for both of us (prosteglandin plus oxytocin rush!) Then my DH gave me a hard foot rub, getting in between my toes etc. We went to bed. About 2 hours later, 11 pm or so, I was woken up with what felt like my period coming on. I always got my period in the middle of the laid there, paying attention, yup, they kept coming. So I tried to get some more sleep. about 2:45 it woke me up again, so I got up, peed, saw that I lost part of my plug, had a little blood. Called the MW to let her know, she said it sounded good, had another mom in labor (a friend ironically) and to touch base when things got more intense. It was a slow process from there, but that's how it started.

No diarrhea, in fact I had a hard high stool mass that couldn't be felt untill about 8 cm that was causing tremendous pain untill I got an enema, it was a miracle. This time I may do an enema after the start of labor just for preventative, and for my mind!

I dind't have much BH contrax, water didn't break, MWs broke it when my labor seemed to stall, it worked for me, otherwise it was a transfer, blah.

She never "dropped"

So i guess didn't have any warning signs except that it was getting to be that time.
 

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i always thought you would definitely know when you are in labor until i went into labor. my first sign with my first was bloody show, but since i had one wipe of blood, i was confused. was it DTD earlier in the day, or what? then i had a vague feeling of waters breaking, a sort of really very small swoosh, then trickling, but hell, i'm moist all the time, so i couldn't figure it out. i had thought i had waters leaking before, but it wasn't. then contractions started, but i had had contractions for a few days before...this was at 1130p. at 6am, after writing down contraction times all night, i still wasn't sure, but called my peeps anyhow. it seemed a sort of decent hour to give everyone a heads up.

i was totally oblivious, because i was 37 weeks, and i just wasn't sure if it was false labor or not, but everything progressed, and i called the midwife, who said, well, come in at 12p, that means you've been in labor for 12 hours and we can tell. it wasn't until i was in the car, really uncomfortable, that i thought i was in labor. the good (and bad, because i wanted to be further along) thing was that i also was only four cm dilated when i went in. if i was about to have the baby, i.e., like 7-10cm dilated, i would be SURE i was in labor, ykwim?

this time i hope to be a little more savvy, but then again, this pregnancy i have had contractions and BHs since october, so i now always think i am in labor. good grief.
 

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I was induced with my first, but I'd been having irregular, low grade contractions for 5 days before the induction. They were uncomfortable, but manageable.

With my second child, I woke up at 6am with some mild contractions and they just built up...by 7am I knew it was definitely labor. My water didn't break until I was about to push.

And I've never seen my mucus plug...not sure when that came out each time.
 

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My mom always said the same thing to me as well b/c I had/have soooo many BH's (irritable uterus from 2nd trimester on) that I wondered how would I know.. well, I was one of those who KNEW immediately when labor started. It was 2 weeks before she was due, I was in bed at 6am and within the first contraction I was on the floor in some serious pain. My dd was breech, though, so I don't know if this made labor worse than it should have been - it was some serious back labor. My contractions were not consistant at all and came for the next 6 hours anywhere from every 10 minutes to every 2-3 minutes. I got to my midwife at noon and was already 4 cm so they rushed me into a c-section within the hour (her feet were straight down). I'm hoping for a VBAC this time so we'll see how the complete labor goes down..
 

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My first baby started with my water breaking.

Baby #2 didn't give me any warning. I got up around noonish. I said, "maybe I feel something. I don't know"...and hour and half later she was born.
 

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Ds was EASY...had some bh during the day(no pain what so ever), then all of a sudden felt like i had to poo/throw up(not realizing I was in transition) went to the washroom, my water broke and I was pushing, thank goodness the midwife was coming up the stairs as I was pushing, yelling at her that I wanted to go get an epidural...she laughed at me and said good luck getting to the hospital in time...ds was born in 2 hours 15 min of "true labour"

THIS baby is totally different, im dialated having PAINFUL bh to the point that the midwife had to come check me last night since i was in so much pain(was super worried that the baby was going to fall out like ds, since im not37 weeks yet.) turns out thatim still at 2cm NO CHANGE, and that it seems like this will go onfor a few days
 

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It really depends on what one considers "the begining" of labor. For many who are not first timers, ACTIVE labor starts after some major dilation/effacement has taken place so it is technically not the actual begining. My first sign with #1 was water breaking, even felt the pop, but then it just leaked a little throughout all 22 hours. With #2, I was just having contractions and from the time we started timing them (as they were not going away this time - my only sign) to birth was a little over 4 hours. With #2, I was probably "in labor" the whole afternoon, if not longer. I have always felt contractions throughout most of pregnancy, but they don't bother me, so I guess I just wasn't paying attention to them
 

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I had some unexciting BH the evening before #1 was born, and slept through the night. Got up and was eating breakfast when I started having contractions 5 min apart. Since I was 2 days past my due date, I figured it might mean something. Otherwise, they weren't necessarily that painful. Then things sped up and got painful really fast and I had her within a few hours after that. Had some bloody show when I arrived at the hospital, but don't remember losing a mucous plug. Oh, and the MD broke my water as I was pushing out dd's head, because it never broke on its own.

This pregnancy, I've been having BH for MONTHS, and really painful, crampy-type contractions for weeks, so I'm afraid I might be in labor for a while before I really know it. Nights lately are rough, because I have so many, and they really truly hurt. I'm always so exhausted though, that I can't make myself focus on the time, duration, etc. I just know that I moan a lot and try to keep breathing through them.

I've already lost my mucous plug twice (a couple weeks ago, and then again the other day), and I've been asking the midwife to check me at every visit, because I need to know that all of this ouchiness is doing something. Yesterday I measured 2 cm , 70% effaced and baby's head "very low".

The shooting pains in my cervix and my bottom are WAY more intense now that the baby has dropped. So I'm 37 weeks 2 days and just trying to stay cool and wait for something big to hit me on the head and tell me that I'm in labor!

Trying not to stress too much about DH's 30 min ride home from work and our 30 min ride to the hospital...
 

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My water broke w/DS at 11am. I called my OB, who was calling ME to say I needed to come in to be induced w/pre-eclampsia. I only had 2 contractions on my own between h2o breaking and being induced at 1. DS was born at 5:50. lol
 

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1st: Contractions that were def different than previous contractions I had...I didn't have any bloody show until I was already at the hospital.

2nd: Medically needed induction

3rd: I lost my mucous plug like a month before labor started...I was so excited, but obviously nothing came of it haha I was so mad!! So then I was sleeping, woke with one intense contraction, got up and my water was trickling with each contraction and went and had baby
 

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I had some "real" contractions that morning, enough that I knew it was real. Sent ds to preschool, had dh stay home from work. Went to hosp. maybe 10ish am. Contractions stopped completely, they sent us home after we walked for a while and nothing. Went home, took a bath, then a nap while hubby went to get ds from preschool. I woke up crying the contractions VERY strong. Called him and told him to take ds to Nana's house then get home. No bloody show, waters, mucus plug... just labor! I made toast with strawberry jelly, and I remember I doubled over in the kitchen and pretty much screamed at one point. I was waiting out front with my bag when dh got back, I remember telling the gardener I was in labor, he was like "OH". It was probably around 3 when we got to the hospital, dd was born a little after 10 pm. (On due date) which was funny because I was so miserable toward the end that I had convinced mw against her wishes to induce me the next day. I guess I was being SLIGHTLY unreasonable
My first child on the other hand I carried 42 weeks. I guess I wasn't wanting to do that again. This time I am trying to be patient when the time comes.
 

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My only sign of impending labor was lots of mucousy discharge for a few days prior, then at the end seeing some pink and brown blood streaks in it. No increase or change in BH, no cramping, nothing. About 24 hours later I woke up at almost 3 a.m. with THE most painful contraction ever. They began coming every 7 minutes, with what seemed like very "mini" contractions in between. I threw up almost immediately after they began. We got to the hospital within an hour and I was already at 8 cm.
 

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DD was almost 2 weeks past the due date, so we followed all the standard advice: sex, hot foods, walking, walking, walking... nothing. But I couldn't sleep at all and at 5am or so I was getting up to shower and do prayers and as I stood up, my water broke. Only thing that saved my carpet was that there was a pile of laundry nearby...


Contractions started soon after and got serious enough that I called my doc at 6 who told me to go back to bed how this baby won't be here for at least 12 hours.
We went into the birth center at 11, when the contractions were making me push and DD was born a lil after 2. I love the way that my birth center does it - very few VEs. I only had 2 in labor, one when I first arrived at the birth center (7cm) and one after I'd been there for a while to make sure I was at 8 so I could get into the water.

I never noticed the mucus plug, or bloody show or any of that. But it could be that it was all there, but since I went into the shower right after my water broke it all washed away and I never noticed. AFter the initial gush of amniotic fluid, I didn't notice any for the duration of the labor
 

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My water broke first, both times.

The first time contractions were very slow to start--nothing strong for more than 12 hours. The second time, contractions started in about 30 minutes and were 2 minutes apart within two hours.
 

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With my first, labor started with contractions. I had never had BH, so I knew this was it. I lost my MP at 6 cm and have no idea when my water broke.
With my second, they stripped my membranes. About 2 hours after I got home, I started contracting. Again not having had BH, so I knew this was it. Lost MP around 6cm. They broke my water at 4-5cm.
With this one, I have been having BH for weeks, so already I am at a loss. How am I supposed to know this time? Fortunately I now know how to check my self, so when things get intense I get to that to see if I am actually progressing.
 

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With my first, I had contractions (real not BH, yes they feel different) and slowly dilated up to 4cm over a 2 week period before they augmented my labor with pit at 41 weeks. We found out when I was ready to push that my water had leaked away without me even noticing, but we were in the midst of the worst heat wave in 10 years, so none of my docs suspected at my regular visit or my NST the week before delivery either.

The second pregnancy was the twins, and I had BH from 18 or 20 weeks onward with them. by 34 weeks it was never ending contractions, but I only had one labor scare at 29 weeks that required intervention. They gave me terbutaline. It was awful. I delivered by c/s at 38 weeks on the nose after my BS and BP got touchy. The boys had both been stuck in a true transverse position for almost 10 weeks anyway.

This time I have had a rock hard belly for most of the day for at least the past month. This baby is my most active singleton, and she kicks off contractions constantly. Truthfully, it doesn't bother me much. I just go on with what I am doing most of the time. My notable exception being after 3pm, and until around 9pm. That is my time to rest each night, and I stay off my feet as much as possible.
 
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