Today’s episode is an interview with Dr. April Jones. She’s a pharmacist, author, and entrepreneur. As the parent of a childhood cancer survivor and amputee, she is an advocate for a number of interests, including adaptive sports. She uses her family’s story to educate others and encourage them to find strength in struggle and purpose in pain. As an author, she entertains audiences in print, ebook, and audiobook.
Dr. April Jones is not only an Oncology Medical Director for Pfizer, but she is also the author of No Mess No Message, owner of The Drifted Drum Company, a motivational speaker, an avid community volunteer, a mentor, and a leader in the pharmacy profession. Along with her many professional credentials, she’s the mother of an international adaptive athlete/cancer survivor/college student and 2 other busy boys. It’s her personal journey that makes her an authority on transforming pain into purpose and struggle into strength.
Mentioned in this episode
- Website www.thedrifteddrum.com When you buy No Mess, No Message through the website, you can purchase an author-signed copy! Dr. April Jones can inscribe a special message if desired and/or giving as a gift!
- Book link on amazon.com No Mess, No Message. Finding Strength in Struggle and Purpose in Pain (You can see my review of the book on amazon.com!)
- No Mess, No Message is also available online at Barnes and Noble, BAM, Apple, GoodReads, Bookbub, Amazon, Target, and Walmart.
- Tickets to the Path to Purpose Virtual Retreat can be purchased at www.thedrifteddrum.com/collections/event-tickets. Use code WELOVEKIM for 10% off!!! Speakers mentioned in this podcast episode:
- Dr. Katariina Rosenblatt, PhD, human trafficking survivor, There is Hope for me Foundation
- Pastor Zane Isaacson – attempted abortion survivor
- Monica Schmelter, Talk Show Host, Bridges on Christian Television Network
- Fabi Powell, Founder of Josh Powell Foundation – dedicated to synovial sarcoma awareness
- Jerrica Dodd PharmD – Leadership session facilitator
- Bryan Heard and Tony Goforth of Crucial Conversation Podcast
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
- LinkedIn (April Jones)
- Facebook @dr.apriljones, @thedrifteddrum
- Instagram @livebeautiful_dr.mom, @thedrifteddrumco, @tylergjonesy
- YouTube The Drifted Drum Company, Tyler’s new channel is “College Through Christ”
- TikTok @drjones_nomessnomessage, and @tylergjonesy
- Paralympic Games
- Challenged Athletes Foundation
- Nashville Audio Productions
- Wesley’s Warrior Foundation
- I-CAN! = International Child Amputee Network
- Endeavor Games in Oklahoma
- Book Launchers
Highlights from the interview
April celebrated the 1st anniversary of the release of No Mess No Message in Sept 2020.
April’s son Tyler (cancer survivor) started college this fall. He’s pre-med for sports medicine and will earn an athletic trainer’s certificate in his Bachelor’s Program. He wants to specialize in adaptive sports medicine.
When April tried to identify her book’s target audience, she thought it would be cancer moms. Turns out, her journey is relatable to anyone facing adversity. It helps prepare someone facing a struggle.
“Meat grinder” analogy = processing what’s happened to you. What we put in needs to come out better once we’ve processed it.
I related to the book even though I’m an “autism mom.” April wanted to help others to be stronger. If the pain happened, and it’s behind her, and she can’t use it to help others. It’s compassionate to share with others. April is a mentor of sorts in the book. One theme is, “Hang in there! If I can make it through this, so can you!”
Why did April narrate her own book? To be as authentic and transparent as possible. Narrating it “her way” was important to her. She had a professional production team record her book.
April’s friend Angela challenged her to write No Mess, No Message. Angela founded Wesley’s Warrior Foundation after her son Wesley passed from cancer as a child. “Helping is healing.” April committed to sending one chapter/month to Angela until the book was finished.
Wesley’s Warrior Foundation helps alleviate financial burdens. Families can’t work due to treatments. Parents need to pay rent and buy groceries. Angela put her finger on what she needed when she was needy and created a foundation to serve that need.
Asking for help and articulating needs can be difficult. April was worried about hurting feelings, insurance reimbursement, etc. You have to do what you have to do or your child will suffer. Find your voice early because you will have to advocate long-term for your child if they live a long life.
If you don’t know your options and how much better life could be, you just can’t make better choices. Support groups can be helpful. Connect with other families that have similar diagnoses and disabilities. She’s learned so much from others about steps she had not gotten to yet. You get to end up being a resource to others AND use the info for the benefit of your own child and his care team. It’s rewarding because you remember how much learning that fact/about that service made a significant and positive impact on your own child.
April attended the Endeavor Games in Oklahoma so she could network with other moms, get support, and learn. Tyler met athletes and made friends and lasting relationships. Tyler participated in races and got medals. It opened his mind to new athletic possibilities and gave him joy.
When you start with a disadvantage, it can make you stronger.
Tyler is April’s business partner at The Drifted Drum Co. As the book was being published, the company was born. It serves more than one purpose. Tyler wanted an apparel line. April wanted to publish other people’s stories. So, they formed The Drifted Drum Company “The Business of Encouragement.” The Drifted Drum Company became April’s publishing Brand, and Tyler Vibes Apparel is part of it. She is developing books with other authors and will publish their stories under her brand.
Events are on the website under The Drifted Drum Company. Examples include “The No Pity Party” Event and “A Path to Purpose” Virtual Retreat.
“Drifted” = ended up in a place you didn’t expect to be due to external forces directing you. “Drum” = a vessel that can be emptied out and filled up over and over again.
Details about Path to Purpose Retreat: Tickets can be found at thedrifteddrum.com. See EVENTS tab. It’s a Virtual event Dec 5, 10 AM-2:30 PM CT. Cost is $50. Use the coupon code WELOVEKIM for 10% off the ticket price. All participants get some swag = her book (digital download) and the companion journal. There is a great line-up of speakers! See links above:
- Kateriina Rosenblatt, human trafficking survivor, There is Hope for me Foundation
- Pastor Zane Isaacson – survived his Mom’s attempted abortion
- Monica Schmelter, Host of Talk Show Bridges on Christian Television Network
- Fabi Powell, Founder of Josh Powell Foundation (sarcoma awareness)
- The Director of The Drifted Drum Co will share about her story of drug addiction and recovery.
- One of the workshops afterward will be facilitated by Dr. Jerrica Dodd PharmD.
The book, ebook, and audiobook were released at the same time. You can download the companion journal to the book by visiting www.thedrifteddrum.com.
April wants to launch the “No Pity Party Podcast” in 2021. She will focus on sharing messages of inspiration and sharing resources that helped her guests.
If you want to keep up with Dr. April Jones and The Drifted Drum Company, sign up for the newsletter on www.thedrifteddrum.com.