Prepping for labor and birth can seem daunting, especially when it comes to assembling your birth plan. There are many questions to ask yourselves, including ones like, "Who will will be present for the birth?" "What interventions do I wish to avoid?" and "Where am I at on the Pain Medication Preference Scale?" Though the research can be time consuming, creating a birth plan can help parents not only learn more about labor and birth but about themselves. Gaining knowledge through evidence-based information can help folks feel more confident in their decisions as new parents. Thinking things through and talking about the tough stuff can also help them better understand who they are as people in their everyday lives. For instance, a woman will not change who she is when she is in labor. It may be a brand new experience for her, but how she copes and how she communicates her needs will run parallel with how she normally deals with stress in everyday life. Tune into your bodies and your minds, mamas! You know more than you think you do!
So, when you are stressed out…how do you deal? Is it with open and honest communication? Do you need feedback to know things are okay? Do you just need a hug? For every woman, it's different. Comfort measures such as massage, hydrotherapy, and music can work as fabulous stress/pain relievers in labor. Music is especially interesting to me, as there are so many different directions you can go with it. Many mamas these days are creating birth playlists, which can provide a pleasant distraction during labor and birth.
The tunes on a playlist may be mellow, upbeat, or nostalgic…maybe all three. No, Enya isn't the only artist that must consume your playlist (unless that's what you're into). I think that's a common misconception among the general public: the birth music's gotta include chimes, chanting, nature sounds, etc. NOPE! Any music that elevates your mood and helps you feel at ease can be helpful during labor. Get the oxytocin pumping and you can't go wrong. Britney, Bruno Mars...maybe a little Prince? Now I'm wondering if I should add Raspberry Beret to my playlist. Keep in mind that the rhythm of the music you're tuning into may also help regulate your breathing patterns and make contractions seem more manageable. Think of Penny Simkin's Rhythm, Ritual, and Relaxation.
Nearing towards my sixth month of pregnancy, I began wondering what my birth playlist will include. I had never thought about it before but soon became very excited to assemble my own. Thanks to Google and Spotify, I've made some progress on what (I think?) I'll enjoy hearing during labor and birth. I'm happily sharing the list below. I have fabulous musical taste so I don't blame you for swiping these lists for your birth, too ;)
What songs will make your birth playlist? Anything in particular you loved listening to while in labor?