Landon is getting a SISTER and Grayson and I couldn’t be more thrilled! I dared to utter that I had a feeling it was a girl a few times during my first trimester, but was not 100% sure. All I had to go by was how I felt, which just seemed different than how I felt when I was pregnant with Landon. With Landon, I experienced no nausea whatsoever, but this time around, I did struggle through a few weeks of queasiness (although not nearly as bad as some friends of mine have). I never actually got sick, but was noticeably more sensitive to smells and sometimes felt very nauseas at random times throughout the day.

At the end of my first trimester, I chose to have the genetic testing that checks for markers indicating chromosome abnormalities pointing to Downs Syndrome and Spina Bifida. I realize this is very controversial and I totally understand why some women feel that there is no need for this testing, especially considering that I am 100% pro-life, no matter what. But, I wanted to do the testing, just to give myself peace of mind (and I did so with Landon, as well). I didn’t think that gender results would come back with this testing, but… it did!

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, but I love the way Jesus works! The week of Halloween brought about a terrible stomach virus to my little family. It started with Landon, then I got sick, and then Gray and my Mama, too. We struggled through it, but it wasn’t pretty and as soon as I felt well enough, I threw the windows open and began cloroxing like a crazy person. Grayson caught the bug on a Sunday night and was up every hour that night sick as could be. The next morning, he was still in bad shape, so he got a substitute teacher and decided to take a half day to rest (which he never, ever does, so ya know it had to be bad). And that’s when the phone rang…

The doctor called to share the results of my genetic testing and had good news! Everything looked normal and our baby was healthy! I was so thankful and relieved, and glad once again that I had chosen to do the testing. Then, she asked me if I wanted to know the gender! I couldn’t believe it! The gender? At 13 weeks? Ahhhh! I put the phone on speaker just in time for Grayson and me to hear it together.

“It’s a baby girl!”

I lost it, ya’ll. All the tears. They came out of nowhere and didn’t stop. I couldn’t believe it. When I go to the doctor, I mentally prepare myself for days ahead of time. I wasn’t even expecting to hear the results of genetic testing for two more days, and I definitely wasn’t expecting to find out the gender! If Gray hadn’t been sick and at home that morning, we would never have been able to hear that news together! I’m telling ya, my God is a God who cares about the little details, and that makes me love Him even more.


We chose a name for our little girl, should God ever entrust us with such a gift, a long time ago, before we even got married. We knew that we would want to name her after someone who means the world to us, someone who is a role model to us both, someone who loves the Lord with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength, and who we love dearly. Tony Harper. The man who has faithfully served our church for 40 years, a man who fought for our country, a man who is completely sold out to Jesus and loves his family like Christ loves the church… He has the biggest heart, loves people with an selflessness that is unmatched, and has more integrity than anyone I know. He not only married Grayson and me, but also filled a role that no one else could have. He walked me down the aisle. He’s loved me like a Daddy should have, and was not only there when I was born, but also when my son was born 23 years later. He and his precious wife, Karen, have been so influential in our lives and we are so honored to give our daughter their namesake. Tony is a rock, a tree planted by streams of water, and his humbleness and faithfulness will be his legacy forever.


Nothing I could say about him would do justice to the amount of love in my heart, but with all that being said, we are honored to name our little girl Harper Gray Bedenbaugh.


Photo by M.Lanier Photography

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