Official blog for the book "Just Behind the Door"

About Mary Leiker

Graduating with degrees in education, counseling and administration has enabled me to have a positive affect on the lives of thousands of people in Colorado and Michigan during my professional career, which began in 1968. During my 38 years in education, I was an administrator for 33.  In this capacity, I was able to teach leadership skills and quality management techniques that made a difference, ultimately, in the lives of our students and the health of our districts.

I have always believed in three personal and professional values: being data driven, customer focused, and practicing continuous improvement. Every day, improve yourself and the world around you. I presented these concepts and wrote about them in various educational settings. When my oldest son was killed at age 36, my world changed.  Yes, leadership and school improvement continued to be critical, but the topic of loss also became another priority in my life. I have spent the last 12 years studying about the topic from leading authors in the field, as well as personally experiencing additional losses with other family members and friends.

I believe my soul work is now to help others cope with their losses and fully appreciate the importance of learning our spiritual lessons on this earth. In my journey, I have experienced an absolute spiritual truth: when the student is ready, the teacher comes along. My volunteer work with the hospice organization has taught me so much about the end-of-life journey and the losses that their loved ones live through.  I have been encouraged to share my decade of communication with three family members who have passed on, to show others that unconditional love opens the door to everlasting communication.

I now live in Arizona and devote my time to helping others keep the doors of their minds open with possibilities and love, rather than closed due to a lack of understanding and fear. My youngest son is a chemical engineer finishing his graduate work. The irony of melding science and spiritualism continues to be an active part of our family dialogue; we are never at a loss for engaging conversation. My three grandchildren help to sustain my belief in being fully present and customer-focused; they bring continual light and joy into my life.  My love for all of my family – here and behind the door – has taught me that unconditional love truly is the Alpha and Omega of our amazing Universe.

Comments on: "About Mary Leiker" (3)

  1. Kathy Dodd said:

    Ms Leiker,
    I am Brenda Garner’s sister and she told me about the book you are writing. How uncanny that you are working on this book the same time Jerry took his own life. Maybe your book will give Brenda and others some insight and answers about this terrible thing. Jerry was a wonderful man and I was so fortunate to have had him as a part of our family.I nicknamed him “The Big Guy” when he moved here to Texas. In Texas and in the South, it is almost mandatory that one has a nickname of some kind. Jerry loved and adored Brenda and I in turn adored and loved Jerry, I will miss him everyday for the rest of my life and I hope he finds peace and serenity “Just Behind the Door.” I am looking forward to keeping up with your blog and also reading your book. I hope Brenda will find peace and closure thru your writings since you both seem to have so much in common. I also had the pleasure of meeting your son, Zach, and he is a fine young man, He is just so nice, sweet. and fun to be around. Well, it appears I have rambled on and on which is a bad habit of mine. Thank you for talking with Brenda. I know it is helping her get thru this as much as anything can. I think because we are sisters and so very close, it is sometimes difficult for her to open up to me, but she knows that I am here for her every step of the way, She needs someone who has experienced what she is going thru. Thank you again for taking time to talk to Brenda.

    Sincerely,

    Kathy Dodd

    • Kathy, I was at Mary’s when I got the news about Jerry. Mary, Zach, and I were absolutely dumbfounded and continue to be, I have known Jerry for 20 years. It would be too difficult to explain my familial relationship to Brenda and Jerry, I believe that we determined it to be “Family by Choice” at our last get together. I hope that Mary’s work will bring some answers and solace to our family. Please give my love to Brenda and let her know that we love her. Hopefully, we’ll find out what is going on “behind the door” because this is a tragedy and a mystery to me.

    • Anonymous said:

      Kathy, thank you for connecting to the website. Brenda is a wonderful human being and by association, I’m sure you are as well. I am so glad you live so close to each other. That is a gift! I will continue to touch base with her every few days. I know evenings are frequently the hardest so I call her then. There are always reasons for suicide in the minds of those who choose it. Unfortunately, for those of us remaining, those reasons are rarely discovered. They best we can hope to achieve is an understanding that there are reasons for everything that happen to us in this Universe – there are no mistakes. They just seem like terrible mistakes to those of us who are left here with our hearts seriously wounded and our minds in utter confusion. I look forward to meeting you are the service for Jerry later on this spring.

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