Mum Refuses to Turn Premature Baby’s Life Support Off

Nicole Dib gave birth to her son Jibreel at only 25 weeks.

This is the story of a brave mother who refused to turn off her premature baby’s life support after doctors told her he wouldn’t survive.

Nicole Dib had to watch as doctors worked hard for five months to keep her little baby boy, Jibreel, alive in the special baby care unit. Jibreel was born very small, weighing only 1.8 pounds.

According to the 32-year-old mum, she and her husband were given the option to turn off their son’s life support five times as doctors told him his tiny body couldn’t take it anymore.

“I remember sitting in the NICU and sitting there with an 838-gram baby and hearing all the beeps and life support machine keeping him alive,” Nicole told Daily Mail. “I look left, I look right and look for some sort of hope and another success story.”

Even though it seemed unlikely, ‘Jibby’ managed to defy all the odds and got better. He is a now four years old, and surprising his parents with how well he’s growing up, despite his cerebral palsy.

Nicole wants to tell her and Jibby’s story to encourage and inspire parents who have babies in similar situations. She hopes they won’t lose hope and will keep trying.

“I feel opening up and sharing our story and giving others hope it’s a part of my healing. Our one wish is to help other families going through the same thing,” she said.

The young mum-of-two said she understood that her pregnancy with Jibby had more chances of difficulties. Her older daughter Aaliyah was born too early at 33 weeks and needed special care for two weeks. But that was still longer than her pregnancy in 2018, when her water broke after only 25 weeks.

“I just thought it was a little leak, it was just dripping then a couple of minutes later it all poured out and I was like, ‘Okay this is bad, this is too soon’,” she recalled. “Being in the NICU before for two weeks, we had a taste and we knew that was the best place to be at the Royal Hospital for Women so I called my husband and we knew what to do straight away.”

The doctors did everything they could to prevent Nicole from giving birth because the baby had a very small chance of surviving. Nicole received medicines like magnesium and steroids to try to delay the baby’s birth and help his lungs grow stronger before being born. However, after three days, the doctors had to do an emergency caesarean section to deliver the baby.

“He held on for about three days then he decided it was time. Even one day makes a huge difference,” she told the outlet. “(Hospital staff) said, ‘We need to take you down for an emergency C-section and as they were about to do it, they said ‘Look, Nicole, you need to push’ and here came Jibby, 838 grams.”

Nicole couldn’t hold Jibby after he was quickly taken to the ICU, where doctors worked hard to save him. When she finally saw him, she was surprised because he looked more like the baby in her ultrasound pictures than a typical newborn.

“The first time I saw him, I’m not going to lie, my head spun and I felt like I was about to faint because what I was seeing was like something I would see in my app every day,” she said. “I would open my app and get excited, ‘Oh what does my baby looks like today?’ and it was exactly like that, his eyes were still fused closed, there was nothing of him.”

“From the moment they put him on my chest, it was so special and I was so excited but I could just see the life support, he was really struggling to breathe and I said, ‘Please put him back’,” she continued. “From then on everything went downhill, all of his organs started to die and the bowels started to die.”

The doctors had to take out a section of Jibby’s bowel and gave him a special bag to collect waste, which helped save the organ. During this difficult time, as Jibby’s small body was getting weaker, the parents were asked if they wanted to keep trying, even though they knew the harm their son’s body was going through.

“As Jibby was getting sicker and sicker they did give us the option quite a few times; if we’d like to keep fighting or if we want to give up and turn his life support off. We were begging them to do whatever you can to save Jibby,” she said.

“One night we got a call from the doctor saying Jibby just gave up and he had to resuscitate him but he’s here and he’s okay. He almost died. At that moment I don’t even know what planet I was on – it was just one thing after another. I knew that Jibby was in great hands and I’m so grateful to have had (the doctors’) help.” 

Nicole said that Jibby keeps surprising everyone by making unexpected progress. He even began walking on his own the day before his first Botox appointment. Botox is a treatment used for kids with cerebral palsy to help make their muscles less stiff and tight.

Jibby now wears special braces on his legs, but besides that, he’s a lively and self-reliant four-year-old who’s full of excitement for life.

“I knew back then there’s always light at the end of the tunnel but I’m just so grateful that I just kept going and I didn’t give up,” she said. “I did have doubts in my head even with early intervention. Some days we weren’t seeing any progress but I’m just so glad we stuck to it and kept pushing.”

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Source: Daily Mail

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