For the first time mommies it’s very natural to have this question. Even I wondered, “But how will I know I am in labor”. I remember asking this to my experienced friends, relatives, my mom and even the doctor. And what I got was – “You will know when it happens”. Really, it was frustrating. So I searched the Internet and I found a few signs to know you are in labor. It said that you will get cramps like the ones you get during your period but a lot worse than that, your waters will break, there will be a bloody show etc.

signs of labor

Image: a revista mulher

Fancy words but to tell you the truth, I didn’t understand a word of it. The last time I visited my obstetrician before my little pumpkin was born, he did a vaginal examination and told me encouragingly that the baby’s head is engaged and be prepared for the baby in the next couple of days. I was so excited that at last my ordeal was about to end.

That very night, I woke up with sharp pains. Oh, were they bad? I just kept on tossing and turning in the bed in order to be comfortable. Nothing worked. The baby had decided to come, that’s what I thought. But before I could raise an alarm, the pains vanished. Just like that! This I realized as the false labor or practice contractions. But boy, were they painful!

The next day passed normally while I continued eating labor-inducing foods like ghee, papaya, ghanthola (not sure about its Latin name) etc. At 12 midnight, my husband wished me Happy Birthday. Yes, it was my birthday. And then we slept. But an hour later, I woke up again with bad pains. This time they were a lot worse. But I didn’t want to wake up anybody lest they subsided like the previous night. I had to be absolutely sure. When I could take no longer, I got up and started walking in the room. It helped a little. I looked at the clock, it was 4 in the morning but the pains were still there. I was writhing in pain, but what to do. It stayed like that till morning when they subsided a little. Oh so that was false labor again, I thought and went to the loo where I spotted some blood. And that was that! I knew there and then that it was the bloody show and I was in real labor.

So actually the saying is correct, you realize yourself when the real labor happens.