Early Signs of Labor… and Why You Should Ignore Them

What should you do with those ambiguous early signs of labor? Ignore them.

Published by Lauren Straight Letterman on 12/15/2019

In and parenting group or forum, especially a due date club, there comes a time for the “How do I know if I’m in labor?” posts. Lots of well meaning experiences, random information and links like this post from Pregnant Chicken are shared in response. And it’s easy for a full term pregnant person to get really excited about an app to time their contractions, or to over-analyze their cramping, or even find themselves doing a Google search for mucous plugs. (Don’t look it up. You’ve been warned.)

With all these possible signs of impending birthing and random tips and encouragement from the interwebs, sometimes an impatient pregnant person just needs to stop.

Stop timing contractions; stop analyzing undies; stop texting her partner every time she feels a shift or a hiccup. It might be early signs of birthing. Or it might just be late pregnancy signs! No way to know until baby arrives. The exciting news is most babies don’t sneak out. At some point, the contraction timer doesn’t matter. The parenting groups don’t matter. The cramps and hiccups go by the wayside because your “Is this it?” suddenly shifts into THIS IS IT.

Your body is ready, your mind is ready, and your baby is ready: It’s go time!

What should you do with those ambiguous early signs of labor? Ignore them. Check in with your birth team (your midwife or doula) and then? Turn off your phone. Take a nap. Relax in a bubble bath. Go for a fun date with your partner. Binge watch your favorite funny series on Netflix.

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