Generally, everything goes according to plan when a cow goes in to labor. However, you never know when a calf will try to be born backwards, when a front leg might be bent back and prevent passage of the shoulders through the birth canal, when an animal tires too much to continue pushing and needs some phsyical help, or when the amniotic sac fails to break and could potentially suffocate the calf if the mama cow is not aggressive enough in licking off the newborn. So, not only do you sometimes awake at 2:00 to check, you might have to stay up to wait and see if a cow that has just gone in to labor is successful in her efforts or requires some assistance.
The nights can get long. Sometimes the sun rises and you start the day out dreaming about how early you can get to bed that evening. It's just the way life goes and I wouldn't think of changing it.
I have seen over the years literally thousands of calves who have entered this world. And each one, each one, amazes me. That an animal can be born in the dead of night to a cold world, arise within 15 minutes, walk, and instinctively know where to find that first warm drink of colostrum is absolutely fascinating. "How do they know?", I say to Danish Cowboy. "How?"
Calving season is exhaustion and wonder all rolled in to one.