Thursday, June 15, 2017

Choosing Lullabies for Your Baby


The other night, I went and leaned against the doorframe of Coco and Theo's bedroom door for a few minutes before going to sleep. The room was aglow from Coco's pink flower lamp and the white noise machine filled the room with a constant, relaxing whirring. Also to be heard was their lullabies and I just stood there, admiring their sweet sleeping faces, listening to the lullabies. It took me back to a very early morning nursing session when Coco had a cold as a baby. We were staying at my mom's during a visit and the blinds were lowered from the top down enough to see a big slice of star speckled sky. As I lay there nursing Coco in the dark, listening to the rhythm of her breathing, morning light slowly took over the sky, extinguishing the stars one by one and gave way to birdsong and sunrise. It was pure magic. Standing there in their doorway, I could almost feel her heavy little baby body in my arms, and see her sweet cheek as she nursed and cuddled with me. I think that's the best part of having lullabies for your babies. Years later, they can take you back to those truly tender moments we might otherwise forget.

Before I was even pregnant with Coco, I was in charge of setting up the nap room at school for the 3-year-olds who stayed in the afternoon and needed a nap. We had little nap mats that we spread out around the room and little blankets for each one. We brought the shutters down so it was nice and dark, and I decided we should have lullabies. It was a learning process. At first, I though I could just play classical music, but classical music is so dynamic with crescendos and cymbals that it did not work at all. Three or four children would be shocked awake, or even start crying. So then I found Baby Einstein Lullaby Classics Vol. 2. It's classical music, but adapted to be pleasing and lulling to baby ears and brainwaves while they're falling asleep. It worked like a charm and was indispensable in the nap room.

Then, after Coco was born, I still had the album in my iTunes, so it got a lot of good use. I also invested in Fisher Price's Rainforest Music and Celtic Lullabies, two fantastic lullaby collections I never could have survived without. When Coco wasn't settling in the stroller, I would play her lullabies on my phone to calm her. And in the photo above, we were on vacation in Davos where her lullabies made nap time so easy and automatic even though we were in an unfamiliar place and she was sleeping in her travel cot instead of her own bed at home. Since Theo was born, we have had more than a few miserable moments while driving rescued by putting the Baby Einstein lullabies on over the stereo. I can't imagine motherhood without them.

Do you play lullabies for your child? Which are your favorite albums?

3 comments:

  1. We don't do lullabies exactly, but we do have special songs for her. Before daughter was born my husband recorded himself singing and playing piano and we've played two songs for her every night before she goes to sleep every day of her life! The songs are How Long Will I Love You and Samson by Regina Spektor. These songs always make me think of our daughter, and I do believe they are magic in helping with night time routine when we're in a different place or someone else is putting her to bed! I totally am on the bandwagon of night songs!

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  2. I have always sung lullabies myself to my babies. I also made up my own for each of them when they were babies so they have a special song. I loved singing to my babies and would have felt like I missed out on something special to just play music somehow (and I'm not particularly a singer but it seems so natural to sing to babies and toddlers)

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  3. My Mom gave us a Baby Lullaby CD when our baby boy was born. Wonderfully calming piano music. I almost fell peacefully asleep every night when we played it. Not the young man, though, but that's a story for another day.

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