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Children's heart beats recorded and set to music as memento


07-19-2016 01:30 BJT

How's this for a childhood memento? A therapist in the United States is playing DJ by recording the heartbeats of young patients and then setting them to music as a memory-making gift for parents and loved ones. The fresh idea has attracted quite a number of parents who would like to keep the memory of their children's childhood alive. Take a listen!

Bridget Sova uses a specialized stethoscope recorder to capture the thumping, rhythmic heartbeats of her young patients. She then blends them with a recording of her playing the guitar or singing a tune of the family's choosing. Sova says it's a way to ensure the heartbeats live on, regardless of what happens to the child.

"I think a heartbeat is such a beautiful sound. And especially to a parent, their child's heartbeat is probably the most beautiful sound that they can hear," said Bridget Sova, Music Therapist of Helen Devos Children's Hospital.

There's no limit to what can be mixed. Sova has paired heartbeats with everything  - from traditional lullabies to songs by pop stars.

"As music therapists, we know that music is so tied to our memories. And, so, the hope is that families, when they listen to this, they'll immediately think of their son, their daughter," said Bridget Sova.

Kim Betser says she often listens to Sova's mash-up of her infant daughter Adalyn's heartbeat and an acoustic guitar rendition of "You Are My Sunshine". For her, the recording is a reminder that little Adalyn, who was born 8 weeks premature and with Down syndrome and heart defects, is still around.

"It just brings joy. It makes me happy to hear that heartbeat and know that she's strong and healthy and here, and we've made it through some rough patches early on in her life," said Adalyn's mother Kim Betser.

Sova has taught a number of the medical specialists how to construct the recording device, by combining a stethoscope with a lapel microphone. The recording of the heartbeats without extraneous noise can be done using an app.

"I'll take whichever song they choose, and I'll make it unique to them. I'll always make it go with that heartbeat. So, I don't change the heartbeat. I change the song to fit the heartbeat. And so that way the song is unique to them and to their son or daughter, brother or sister," said Bridget Sova.

In addition to the musical versions, Sova gives each family a copy an acapella recording of their child's heartbeat.

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