Pʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ is one of the precious moments in a woman’s life. Nowadays, this precious moment is celebrated in various ways. Parties are held where the ɢᴇɴᴅᴇʀ of the baby is revealed. Baby showers are the popular events where the ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ is celebrated with great pomp and show. Photoshoots are also another way to celebrate the arrival of a new phase. Right from pre-wedding to ᴍᴀᴛᴇʀɴɪᴛʏ shoots, they have become extremely popular amongst the public these days. Coming to ᴍᴀᴛᴇʀɴɪᴛʏ shoots, the main purpose behind it is to showcase the beautiful moment and being excited about the arrival of a new member to complete in their family. The shoots are based on various themes. Either they are taken in the four walls of the homes or in the outside surroundings to give it a more natural touch. The props involve flowers and other pretty things. However, there have been instances where rather outlandish things have been a part of the photoshoot. In the instance that will be talked about now is a striking example of this.
When commercial beekeeper Bethany Karulak-Baker decided to have a ᴍᴀᴛᴇʀɴɪᴛʏ photoshoot after getting ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴛ, it seemed only natural that her job and life might feature as part of it. However, Bethany decided to do something most people would wince at, staging the shoot so that thousands of bees were sat on her tummy. Perry and Bethany decided to challenge themselves with their photoshoot, working with their hives to have them ‘beard’ around her over-eight-months-ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴛ sᴛᴏᴍᴀᴄʜ. The ᴀʟʟᴇʀɢʏ issue was the first thing to worry about. Bethany said: “I have a ʟᴏᴄᴀʟ ʀᴇᴀᴄᴛɪᴏɴ which means I get welts that ɪᴛᴄʜ and last for up to six weeks. They are extremely annoying but not at all ᴅᴀɴɢᴇʀᴏᴜs.” Bethany was ‘ᴛᴇʀʀɪꜰɪᴇᴅ’, but had the shoot approved by doctors beforehand. As a result, though, the couple decided to use nurse bees, who are more docile and easier to handle.
Finding a photographer was the next hurdle, with the pair taking 10 attempts to find the perfect person, eventually choosing Brooke Welch. Then there was the logistics. Bethany said: “We tethered a ǫᴜᴇᴇɴ around my ʙᴇʟʟʏ while she was in her cage. It is common practice to place ǫᴜᴇᴇɴs in cages and doesn’t ʜᴜʀᴛ her whatsoever. Once we tied her around my ʙᴇʟʟʏ, we had to ensure the temperature was perfect (cloudy and cool) as well as chose to work with nurse bees (who are the most docile). We chose frames filled with nurse bees and removed them from the hive. I held a folder under my ʙᴇʟʟʏ and we dumped the bees onto my ʙᴇʟʟʏ and the climbed up from the folder to “beard” around the ǫᴜᴇᴇɴ in her cage.”
Around 10,000 bees were shown in the photos on Bethany’s stomach, and she wasn’t sᴛᴜɴɢ once. Bethany’s photographs soon went viral, but thankfully she says ‘the response has been overwhelmingly supportive, kind, and loving.’ She continues: “Many women have come forward to share their own experiences suffering a ᴍɪsᴄᴀʀʀɪᴀɢᴇ. Others have placed orders for honey from our commercial honey business. There are a few people who do not understand bees or beekeeping, so naturally a few ɴᴇɢᴀᴛɪᴠᴇ internet armchair warriors.” For Karulak-Baker, this has not been an easy ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ. Earlier, she had faced a ᴍɪsᴄᴀʀʀɪᴀɢᴇ. She requested the netizens to not see it as just a photo with her ʙᴇʟʟʏ ʙᴜᴢᴢɪɴɢ with bees, but as a brave and ᴄᴏᴜʀᴀɢeᴏᴜs ᴡᴏᴍᴀɴ ᴀɴᴅ ᴍᴀᴋɪɴɢ her unborn child realize that her mother is a hero.