Jasmine Tunstall of Melbourne, Australia, is fortunate to reside in a country that has a focus on educating moms about tracking fetal movement. And though this is important to her story, the real voice in her head on Dec. 19, 2019 — the day she saved her daughter Audrey — was that of Count the Kicks Idaho Ambassador Lindsay Rager.
Jasmine and Lindsay became friends while working together as international missionaries, and kept in touch after returning to their home countries. In 2014, Lindsay Rager was expecting her first baby. Unfortunately, her baby, Sadie, was born still on Nov. 14, 2014 due to a suspected cord injury when Lindsay was in her eighth month of pregnancy.
Lindsay had been counting Sadie’s movements, but only with limited understanding of what kinds of movements are good and what signs to watch out for that could indicate her baby was in distress. Determined to honor Sadie and help spread awareness after her death, Lindsay openly shared her devastating story with friends and family and on social media, which is how Jasmine learned that stillbirth is a very real and potentially preventable birth outcome even in today’s modern world.
In 2019, Jasmine found herself expecting a baby. She had a healthy pregnancy despite being high risk due to her advanced maternal age and medical history. Her baby, Audrey, was a “super active” baby, so when Jasmine noticed that her daughter’s movements had not only decreased in amount, but that her quick, strong movements had also become sluggish in nature, Jasmine knew she had to speak up.
Jasmine had been regularly receiving ultrasounds and had a recent doctor appointment, but she could not shake the knowledge that Lindsay had given her: movement could be a sign of distress, stillbirth is real, and in some cases, can be preventable IF a mom speaks up in time. Jasmine acted quickly and went to the hospital where the medical team agreed that her baby was in distress. Her baby was delivered safely via C-section, and her doctors found that the baby’s cord was both compressed and prolapsed (when the umbilical cord slips ahead of the baby and moves into the cervical canal).
Lindsay is grateful that by sharing her story of loss she was able to make a difference in how Jasmine and Audrey’s story ended. “I am truly grateful that Jasmine and I could bond over the safe arrival of Audrey rather than her joining me in the club no one wants to be in. I think it can feel a bit scary for a mom whose baby has been saved to approach a loss mom, because they don’t want them to feel sad that it wasn’t their baby who was saved. And that is certainly a possibility.
Though we may never know if counting kicks could have saved Sadie, I do know that I was lacking vital information and that Count the Kicks has made its mission to educate and empower women all over the world about the power of kick counting,” Lindsay said.
Thanks to Lindsay’s willingness to share her story with others, Jasmine knew how important it was to speak up and advocate for her baby. We are so thrilled that Audrey is here today – a beautiful and healthy baby with a truly thankful mom and dad.
We’re also grateful to our amazing group of Ambassadors, including Lindsay, who are willing to share their personal experiences to help educate and empower expectant parents around the world! Lindsay and Jasmine’s story shows the powerful impact of sharing Count the Kicks with everyone you know.
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