I’ve been practicing in a hospital setting for thirteen years. I’ve attended thousands of labors and hundreds and hundreds of births. For better and for worse, I’ve witnessed and managed many complications, including the most common obstetric emergencies. I have seen the most normal of normal compromised by unnecessary medical intervention, and I have witnessed the slightly abnormal only recognized as such too late and, thus, allowed to progress into full-blown complications. All of this experience has only bolstered my belief that institutional protocols used routinely without due regard to particular circumstance can not only get in the way of the normal process of labor and birth, but also, in the case of a labor subtly veering off-track, it can obfuscate nuance and thus prevent the early recognition of a problem in which simple course-correction could make or break a desired outcome. What is that desired outcome? The safest, healthiest and happiest possible mothers and babies, of course!