Life before birth is an interesting concept. When pregnant, we're often told to "read to the baby", or "play music for the baby" because it's believed that babies while in utero have the capability to hear and have thought processes that can be enhanced by such interaction. I do subscribe to this theory - just as I believe that a baby in utero can sense when their mother is calm, or stressed - as it triggers a physical reaction that can affect the baby's environment. While the baby can't differentiate peace from chaos - that's far too complex a thought - it can tell a difference in it's physical surroundings.
I often refer to my son as an "old soul". He often talks about the "old days", or "remembering" music that is from another era, such as the 1940s. Does he really remember it? I truly don't know. But I do know that shortly after my daughter was born, he blew me away with a "memory" of his. We were sitting on the couch together, with my daughter - and he very casually said to me "I remember being in your belly". I said, "you do, do you?". And he said "uh-huh. It was dark, and I could hear you, but I couldn't see you...so I kicked, and kicked, and then I was out". Funny thing is, my son was 4 weeks early, born the day after my baby shower. My water broke the morning after the shower, first thing when I woke up. I don't remember him being overly active previous to it happening - but, it was an interesting enough comment he made, I didn't know what to say. Did he really remember it? It was such a casual, matter of fact statement he made - I thought that maybe we do really remember things but like all memories, they fade as we get older. Or we're told that it's "our imagination" and sort of chided into "forgetting".
A few nights ago, as I put my daughter to bed - I sang her a song. I've never done it before, but I thought she's at a good age to start that sort of routine. I've sung to my son before bed since roughly the same age, so I figured why not. She's always gone to bed earlier than my son. She's never, ever heard me put my son to bed. I sang to her the same song I sing to him, "You are my Sunshine". She had the most amazing reaction - she laughed, and giggled - and kept saying "thank you". I've sung it every night since, and she just giggles and beams. One of the biggest smiles I've seen her give.
I sing songs to her all the time. Random songs, funny silly songs. But I'd never sung at bedtime - nor have I ever sung that song in particular to her. Ever.
It sort of makes me wonder if she could hear me when I was pregnant - and remembers....?