Updated: Dec 26, 2019
When contractions begin to be consistent, that's early labor. Depending on whether this is your first baby or your second, third, fourth..... and depending on baby's position will determine how quickly or slowly your cervix dilates leading to birth.
When contractions begin its best to ignore them as log as you can, and then ignore them even more. Do something you enjoy, sleep if you can, go for a walk, start a project. When you can no longer ignore them, start to notice how frequently they occur. Time them for about 15 minutes. If they are occurring every 3-4 minutes and lasting over 60 seconds, closer to 75 seconds, you are heading in the right direction. Once this is happening for over an hour, its time to call your midwife and give her a heads up. You still have time to get to the birth center or for her to come to your home, so don't worry, but the birth will likely happen sometime that day or night. Pack your bags and stay as comfortable as you can, sleep if you can, pace if you need to, take a bath, shower and just relax. The more you relax, the sooner your baby will come! Get ready to birth your amazing baby.