Preparing for labor is like planning to go on a long trip to somewhere you have never been before. The more research you do the more comfortable you will feel when faced in a strange place. Many hospitals and birthing centers offer childbirth classes where you can learn about the birthing process, how to relax, how to cope with pain, what to bring etc. Most places also offer tours which are very helpful in letting you see where you will be and in answering many of your routine questions about visiting policies, etc. There are also many good books out there on pregnancy and childbirth. Some are written by physicians and midwifes and some are written by childbirth educators and women who have had babies. I recommend that all my patients have at least one good reference to read while they are pregnant. Lots of times your healthcare provider will have a recommended reading list as well as the dates and phone numbers of any classes and tours in your area. As a big fan of the YOUdocs of course I also recommend reading YOU HAVING A BABY.