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Although I had planned on it, I didn’t actually get around to listening to music during my 2 labors, even if I had prepared some for both occasions. The first time around, the labor was so intense from the get-go with contractions every 1-3 minutes, that I didn’t even think of the idea of having music playing. All I needed and wanted was silence, and the reassuring presences of my midwife and partner around me.
And my second labor went so fast that by the time we made it to the birthing center, my baby girl was already in my arms within a few minutes.. bliss. 🙂
But I would have loved to experience the soothing effects of music while laboring.
Relaxation during labor can help to lessen the sensations of pain, as well as create a climate of safety and trust, which in turn helps the body and mind to relax and let go.
It is even recommended to try dancing during labor. I did not get around to that one. LOL. But if you are able to, dancing, alone or with your partner during labor, can help us connect to the joyous nature of pregnancy and birth, create mobility in the body and help to relieve stress and anxiety by releasing endorphins into the body (the powerful pain-relieving and pleasure-enhancing hormone that our bodies produce during labor to help mediate the pain of contractions).
Here are 10 pieces of music that I would have liked to have included into my labors. There are no words, just sounds and melodies.
Note: Some of these are also pieces that I love to use while teaching or practicing yoga.
One of my classics! For yoga practice, as well as for moments of relaxation. (Sample)
This is one of my all-time favorite pieces, it is just so, so gentle. I love to use it for Savasana. It is a bit nostalgic though, so I don’t know how I would’ve actually enjoyed it during labor, but it was top of the list! (Sample)
I find this piece so appeasing, as it brings me calm and focus, and a feeling of release. (Sample)
From this series are very beautiful piano pieces that I simply enjoy. (Sample)
This piece has piano and water sounds which I’m not usually a fan of, but that managed to soothe me. (Sample)
This is a funny one to include, but it’s the music from this birth affirmations video by Indigo Midwifery that I mention in a few posts, which I used during my second pregnancy in preparation for labor and that was so helpful for me. And you’ll find beautiful birth affirmations too! (Sample)
This is another funny and random one that I’m almost embarrassed to include: it’s the alarm tone from my phone called “Serene Morning”. I found it so soothing to hear every morning during my second pregnancy, and it somehow made me feel so calm, that even though it only lasts 23 seconds, I actually prepared the link in loop mode and kept the page open days in advance before my second delivery, ready to play when the time came. Again, it all went so fast that I didn’t get the chance to use it, but would have loved to! (The link provided here is actually a version that is already looped for 10 minutes 🙂 ) (Sample)
Gentle piano, with some ocean wave sounds – again, not usually my thing, but in this case works for me 🙂 (Sample)
#9: Eternal OM
This is another one of my favorites for yoga class, especially for Savasana. It is about an hour of an ongoing om, calms and centers the mind. I think it would have been a nice tool to help me remain focused during labor. (Sample)
#10: Heart Sutra
I just love this piece. You may well be familiar with music by Wah! from yoga classes, she has so much beautiful music to discover. This song actually does soften my heart 🙂 Without a doubt my favorite piece by her. (Sample)
I would love to know if you got a chance to listen to your favorite music during labor, and if it was helpful for you or if you have any other recommendations. Please feel free to comment below!
Hi! I’m Myriam, a former dancer turned yoga teacher based in Montreal. I’m also mama to two unbearably beautiful little ones, ages 1 and 4. 🙂 I believe in the virtues of bringing breath and body awareness as well as humor and loving-kindness to new mamas, and mamas-to-be! Read more→
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