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It sounds like you may be in labor or having some braxton hicks contractions.the side pains you are having may be from back labor so i think u should call your doctor right away to find out.
If it's only hardenig here and there then that's braxton hicks. As for the sharp pains that can also be braxton hicks. When you get the pain, try moving around, changing positions, if the pain goes away or eases off then it's braxton hicks. When you move, change positions, go lay down if standing and the pain stays then it's probably true labour. Typicially when you are in true labour the whole belly will harden.You are unsure or in doubt or not feeling right then go or call the doctor or hospital.