Can you dilate without contractions?

Lorena • Had our baby girl! Ophelia Jean Rose came into the world Nov. 28, 2015!
I'm 40w exactly today. Every apt I've been to in the last month dr asks "how are the contractions" and ive had none, and then I'm not dilated at all and barely effaced. I haven't even had Braxton hicks. I get some period like cramps, but very very mild. More like pms or gas cramps, but only in my lower abdomen. My lower back always hurts because of my sciatic nerve.