Expecting labor is exciting and nerve-racking all at the same time! It's exciting to think that you will meet your baby soon. But, knowing once labor starts, you can't stop it or control it is a little daunting. Every different abdominal sensation and bathroom experience makes you wonder if today is the day when labor will start. In this short article, we will explore some of the signs of upcoming labor and when you can expect to experience them.
2 Weeks Before...
Around two weeks before labor starts you may feel your belly drop significantly. Your legs waddle more, your rib cage feels some relief, but now you have to pee all the time! This noticeable shift in baby's position is called lightening. Baby has officially settled into the top of your pelvis.
Some women experience a sudden burst of energy that will last for about 24 hours. Momentarily the pain and discomfort of late pregnancy disappear, and mom feels like she's back to normal. Most women use that day to finalize preparations and get a lot done around the house. Unfortunately, this nesting energy disappears and the old discomforts of late pregnancy settle back in.
24 to 48 Hours Before...
As labor becomes imminent, mom's body let's you know. As the body prepares for imminent labor, a mom will usually have a good "cleaning out" session in the bathroom. During early labor, the mucus plug in the cervix will come out. This bloody show is a glob of mucus that is pink in color.
Finally, those Braxton Hicks contractions transition into mild contractions. Mild contractions feel like menstrual pain. These mild contractions increase in frequency and duration until you can't ignore them and have to focus breathing through them.
If you suspect you are in early labor, you should check in with your midwife and or doula. Even though it may be difficult to rest, resting and eating normally will give you the energy you need to face the marathon of labor. Place your packed hospital bag at the door.
Most importantly, make peace with God to trust Him through the labor process as much as you trusted him to develop your little one during pregnancy. Meditate on Philippians 1:6, which says, "being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ" (NKJV).