I had my DS this June---he's my first child and I was terrified of the pain of labor/childbirth and getting the epidural---the one with the catheter. As for it relieving pain and discomfort---it worked like a charm. I did have to call the anesthesiologist back in several times to top it off when the contractions progressively got worse---the most I had to wait for him to come back was 15 minutes or so----not too bad---but once he topped it off---Ahhh pure bliss.
I did have to switch laying from my right side to my left side and vice versa every hour or so---because the medicine tends to settle on one side more than the other---it's normal. So if you start to feel less numb on one side, just switch to laying on the other side---but not flat on your back.
Don't be afraid to ask for more medicine---that's what they're there for!
When it came time for pushing, my doctor let up on the epidural anesthesia just a little bit---so I was able to feel VERY minor slight contractions so I could push more effectively---those minor contractions were extremely bearable!
I pushed my baby out in 1 hour---which went by so fast!
Good Luck and Congrats!
It will be OK