Read on... this is not a gruesome tale. I just thought the highlights might be of interest.
Friday (10 Aug) I went to bed at my usual time but after a vigorous sorting out of clothing for donation. (the so called nesting instinct?) I spent most of the night asleep but woke occasionally thinking, "Gee this position really hurts!"
Saturday (11 Aug) I woke around 5 am without knowing why. As insomnia has been the order of the day, I didn't think much of it. Then a few minutes later I experienced a really strong cramp. "Ooh, could this be labor?" I wondered idly, without really meaning it. (I'm thick aren't I?) I did glance at the clock though, so with my next pain, I knew it had been seven minutes. I started watching the clock. I was reluctant to wake David up without being sure.
After one or two more contractions at around the same timing, I woke David up and we got the ball rolling. We had to call his mum to come over to look after Anya. I kept timing everything, then when we were ready to go we called the hospital and let them know we were coming. My obstetrician had told me that things were probably going to happen fairly quickly this time, but I was afraid the hospital would insist that I wasn't really ready yet. They did seem a little doubtful that I was "really" laboring. The midwife said that my timing was a bit irregular and they might even send me home, depending on what the on-call obstetrician thought.
My obstetrician wasn't on duty, so a completely different doctor came and looked at me at about 8:15. By this time I was experiencing strong contractions and was up to sitting under a hot shower and sucking on gas.
I did not like having to get out of the shower and wait around for him to examine me! They said he was on his way but I must have been waiting at least fifteen minutes before he arrived. It certainly showed me how effectively the hot water was easing my pain. The gas on its own wasn't nearly as good.
The doctor convinced me to let him break my waters, saying that otherwise I would be laboring that much longer and getting tired. He predicted that the baby would arrive by lunchtime. After this I went back into the shower. David ran a bath as he thought someone should get the benefit of the spa bath. The midwife laughed when she saw this and took several photos for us.
In the end, Callum was born at 10:19 -- morning tea time rather than lunchtime!