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Did You Experience Any Pre-Game Signs of Labor?

I had my final pre-delivery doctor’s appointment on Tuesday. The ultrasounds have shown that the baby’s head has been down where it should be for a few weeks now, and I’ve been feeling little twinges in my lower abdomen—kind of like those I felt upon first becoming pregnant—for the past week or so. I was surprised when, after a brief internal exam yesterday, the doctor said nothing’s happening; my cervix isn’t showing any signs of preparation for labor yet. He added that this could change overnight, but so far—nada.

No matter what, we’re going in for induction next Wednesday night. It’ll probably be an all-night (and then some) affair, which is cool. I’ve been told I’ll definitely have my baby in my arms by lunch time next Thursday—how exciting! I’m glad to have a definite end date; I know some of you have gone far past your due dates— that must be torture.

I’m confused, though; I was sure that the twinges I’ve been feeling were the result of my cervix thinning or opening or doing whatever cervixes do to get the process rolling. I’m a total novice at this, obviously. Aaron and I dutifully watched a childbirth class DVD and I know all about the “mucus plug” (they’ve gotta give that a new name), the sudden bursts of energy, and the other early signs of labor—which according to the instructor don’t give you much more than a 2-week ballpark indication that you’re going to have a baby (um… duh?). So I want to know from those of you who’ve done this before: Did you know it before you went into labor, or did the contractions start—and not stop—and that was that? Did you experience any physical symptoms or, hell, inexplicable premonitions that clued you in sometime in the day or two before game time? Or was labor, to some degree, a surprise? And what’s up with these twinges?

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