I have spent a lot of time sitting in the waiting room lately. Not the hospital waiting room, but rather the auto repair shop. My 9 year old car Gracie decided not to work last Thursday and has spent the last five days being taken apart, put back together, and taken apart again. As I do not have an extra car parked at home, it is very frustrating being at the mercy of the “professionals” while they figure out how to fix my car.Trying to make the most of my time I have been reading The Labor Progress Handbook: Early Interventions to Prevent and Treat Dystocia by Penny Simpkin and Ruth Ancheta. Sometimes labor slows or seems to stop. This is called labor dystocia. Like my car, the normal movement and progress of labor stalls and doesn’t make progress.
While the health care providers can provide diagnostic information regarding the labor, knowing and deciding what to do with the information can be a daunting task. One of the many roles of the birth doula is to provide informational support during labor.Sometimes it can feel frustrating trying various solutions to find the correct answer for your situation. A doula can help you negotiate through the different positions and options to get labor moving again. The doula has your interests at the heart of her actions, so you know what she will dig deep into her bag of knowledge to help you and your baby.
Tomorrow I will hopefully have my car back and functioning again as she should. I am thankful that I have a husband well versed in auto repair helping me through this process. If you are preparing for birth and are looking for someone well versed in the physiology of labor I would highly encourage you to looking into having a doula. It is a great step to help prevent too long of a stay in the labor waiting room of dystocia.