COLUMN: New life means new beginnings

By SCOTT MIMS / Staff Writer

One news story I look forward to every year is that of the first baby born in the new year.

In Shelby County, we learned that the community’s first baby of 2021 was Kaylin Starr Wood, born at Shelby Baptist Medical Center in Alabaster Jan. 3 to parents Alexa and Cody Wood. Congratulations to this family!

I look forward to these stories because they are uplifting, and because new life brings with it the promise of a new beginning, not only for the family but also for those who are touched by it.

I reference this because my son was born at Shelby Baptist in 2014. Our family had a positive experience there, and I treasure the memory of my son’s birth, as well as the memories of watching the reactions of family members as they met him for the first time, and of friends who came to visit.

John Paul is 6 years old now, and he is our only child. I can only describe the experience of witnessing his birth as like Christmas morning times a thousand. There is no greater gift than the gift of life.

One thought that often crosses my mind as a parent is I wonder what kind of world my son will grow up in. I want him to have more opportunities than I did, and I want to teach him how to seize those opportunities.

I also want him to practice kindness, to value hard work, and to recognize truth—that last one is becoming increasingly difficult to do.

More than anything, people just want to believe that things will get better, and that applies in both the long term and the short term. But we have to do our part, and that’s why how we vote, how we behave on social media, and what we do in front of our kids matters.

I hope the story above gives you the sense of a new beginning today. I think that mindset will help to ensure that 2020 does not repeat itself.