Ohio Woman Who Posed with 20,000 Bees on Her Belly in Maternity Shoot Suffers Stillbirth
“Yesterday evening we had to hand over our precious child and say goodbye to his physical body forever,” Emily Mueller, 33, wrote in a heartbreaking Facebook post on Monday, adding that she and her husband, Ryan Mueller, 37, named their late son Emersyn Jacob.
“Our baby has died. Our baby will never come home with us,” she continued. “This wonderful rainbow baby we were blessed with has now become a storm in our lives.
“Finding out your baby died is unfathomable. Learning you have to be induced and deliver your deceased child is way beyond that. My heart instantly ached for any woman that has told me she had a stillborn.”
Emily, who has three other children — Cadyn, 10, Madelynn, 3, and Westyn, 1 — said she was preparing for an upcoming event on Thursday and didn’t notice her baby’s lack of movement.
“By evening I began to realize I had not felt baby move much and had contractions that felt different than any I have had before,” she wrote. “I just told myself he was sleeping but as the time passed, I felt uneasy about it.”
She and her husband decided to go to the hospital to check for a heartbeat, and sadly learned that their son had died just days before the due date.
“I truly thought we would be sent home with a smile, telling us to just wait for the arrival of our sweet Emersyn, who was due in 6 days,” she wrote.
“I can’t and don’t want to explain that feeling to anyone. Turning to your husband and seeing him die inside. Seeing him completely break. Seeing your children feel and suffer your pain in front of your eyes. The pain is unbearable.”
Emily, a beekeeper and owner of Mueller Honey Bee and Rescue, first got into beekeeping as a way to cope after suffering several miscarriages.
“Bees represent the beginning of new life and after my second miscarriage, I needed a new release,” she told PEOPLE in September. “I connected with the bees and it helped take my mind off of other hardships that were surrounding me at the time, some people do yoga… I do bees.”
During the summer, she ran her unique maternity photo idea by her midwife and natural doctor prior to shooting.
“I’ve never responded poorly to stings, so I felt comfortable doing this,” she said. “Everyone I asked said there’s no research to show how a bee sting affects a fetus.”
The Muellers were absolutely delighted with the photographs.
“It was such a spiritual journey,” Emily said, adding that she was stung four times during the shoot. “They are everything I wanted and just represent our family so accurately.”
Mueller says she believes her baby died from a blood clotting issue that has caused other family members to suffer miscarriages.
“I have a very strong feeling that this was a blood clotting issue as those traits have been affecting our immediate family for some time,” she wrote.
She and her husband decided to send the placenta in for testing, but they are prepared for the possibility that they most likely will never know the cause of their baby’s death.
Just days after the tragedy, the couple says they are grateful for the supportive community around them.
“You could not deny he was loved by so many people and we continue to see this through the outpour of love and support you all are providing,” she wrote. “Just knowing people are thinking about us and hurting with us relieves so much of our own pain.”