I wanted to share this as I was just discussing with a friend how I felt like with each of my labors, my ability to cope with contractions got better and better. I think learning to deal with pain has been one of the lessons I value from my labors. Even as my labors progressed, I found my ability to cope, improve.
I'm not sure if most people would value the ability to cope with pain. Most of the time we would just like to avoid it, but being able to cope with it is helpful. Then if we can go beyond just coping, and reach the point were pain can teach us....that's when we become better than who we were previously.