My top advice for early labor as a first-time mom is to REST!
I know it seems counterintuitive. You’re excited! You’re having contractions! You’re beyond ready to get this thing going and FINALLY meet your baby, so you want to do ALL the things to keep labor going.
BUT…the truth is that labor and delivery the first time around can be LONG. And it’s way easier to rest or even get a nap early when things are slow/mild vs. in the middle of the night when contractions are strong and painful.
When I went into labor with my 1st, I walked miles my entire afternoon. I stayed busy doing ALL the things. And THEN…I ended up with a 36-hour labor, with NO sleep during the night, and I was completely exhausted when the HARD labor finally hit.
Sleep deprivation makes EVERYTHING more difficult, including your ability to cope with pain, make logical decisions, and push effectively.
Moral of the story: REST early so you can be at your very BEST when you need it!