April Moments

Maybe, just maybe, telling the story is just as important as the story itself

About April Moments

Growing up in small town Ohio, I always felt a little out of place as the chubby April Leiffer who lived in a trailer. I endured high school, with band and show choir as my primary activities. Despite my love for music, I felt that pursuing it as a career was not acceptable. I was good at almost every subject, but I always had an affinity for language, so I picked English as my major in college. I knew I liked writing although I struggled with writing about myself.

During those four years in another small Ohio town, I still felt like an outsider. I made a few close friends, but I didn’t like going out. Bars and clubs were not my scene. The thought of going to a college party terrified me.

It was in my junior year of college that I started to discover I was a writer. I really embraced my literature and writing classes. I read others’ stories – both fiction and nonfiction – and I began to believe that I could tell my own stories. So I wrote a brief memoir as my senior capstone project. Not only did I enjoy having written it, but other people complimented me on it.

Since that time, I have been telling stories – professionally as a newspaper reporter and a public relations specialist, and personally as blogger April Leiffer Henry, wife and mama of two. Over the years, I’ve been inspired by lots of different people – including my husband and my children – and their passions. I’ve wondered if I should train to be a pastry chef, doula, midwife or lactation consultant.

For me, sometimes being a writer can feel like being a lowly spectator, with a notebook and a camera, asking questions and knowing so little. This happens to us sometimes as parents, too. Often I am so busy taking pictures – trying to document important milestones and capture special memories – that I end up missing out. It’s as though I’m living outside the moment, instead of being in the moment.

This blog is my way of sharing some of those “April Moments” – moments when I’m inspired by peeking in on others’ important work and moments when I am weary from being on the sidelines and still feel like a complete outsider. I call it “April Moments” because my brain is almost constantly weaving a narrative. Whether I’m at home, my workplace, my car, the grocery store or the gym, any given “April Moment” could turn into a blog post.

When I graduated from college, all the professors in the English Department signed cards for the seniors. One of the messages in my card read, “April may be a month, but Leiffer is a writer. There is no higher praise.”

Imagine if there was no one to tell the difference makers’ stories. Who would want to live in a world without the storytellers? Maybe, just maybe, telling the story is just as important as the story itself.