One Woman’s Journey from Grief to Life An Interview with Donna Visocky

by Merrie Lynn Ross

Image for One Woman’s Journey from Grief to Life An Interview with Donna Visocky

by Merrie Lynn Ross

In this exclusive conversation, Merrie Lynn Ross, award-winning actress/filmmaker, interviews her dear friend, Donna Visocky, a powerhouse in the spiritual community. Donna, creator of BellaSpark Productions, is a spiritual luminary, talk show host of InnerViews, and catalyst for positive change in the world.

Donna’s mesmerizing and compelling book, “I’ll Meet You at the Base of the Mountain” is set for a November 2013 debut. After the loss of her daughter, Kristi, Donna is catapulted into a grieving mother’s world. Riveted by an illuminating journey, she miraculously discovers that there is life after death.

Merrie Lynn

Bravo for the tour de force book you have written, I’ll Meet You at the Base of the Mountain. I read it in one sitting and could not put it down. Your candor, truth telling, heartfelt recounting and wisdom are spellbinding. Can you share how you arrived at this landmark moment?

Donna

My journey started after the death of my daughter Kristi. The book opens at 5:50 in the morning when my husband and I were awakened by the doorbell ringing. Police cars are parked outside and several police officers and a chaplain are standing at the door; they are there to tell us our child has died. I realized I was now part of a club I did not want to join. It’s a devastating experience, impossible to wrap your arms around. So the beginning of my book describes what I was experiencing and felt. It’s raw and uncensored because I was raw with pain and emotion.

Merrie Lynn

Donna as you know, the same club grabbed my heart when I lost my beloved son, Byron. As mothers we have both gone through unfathomable grief. It is tough and incomprehensible to cope with pain and loss. What can you share to help us overcome our grief?

Donna

The pain of losing a loved one never really goes away. It rips your heart open and leaves a hole that never quite gets filled and is always a part of you. The waves of grief hit you hard at first. They roll over you again and again and you feel as if you are drowning. It’s important to live through it, experience it, and at times be angry with it. As time passes though, the waves are less frequent, the troughs between them wider; they subside a little and don’t hit you as hard or take you as deep. You learn that you can survive just as so many people before you have. It’s important that we grasp that. Somehow we need to understand and believe that life can go on for us and we will be able to smile again, to laugh again; we will see the beauty and perfection in the way life unfolds.

Merrie Lynn

What you said is so true, it took my breath away. It is about finding a glimmer of hope and the will to go on. Your message applies to whatever challenge we are facing: financial loss, divorce, losing a job. It’s like a roadmap to reinvent our lives. The book is titled, I’ll Meet You at the Base of the Mountain. Where did the name come from?

Donna

About two years after Kristi died I met Kimmie Rose Zapf, a psychic medium, author and speaker. We hit it off right away and even though she lived in Michigan and I was in Colorado, I knew there was a special connection between us. Shortly after she returned home I got an email from her. She said “Kristi came to me this morning. She has a message for you. Kristi said ‘I’ll meet you at the base of the mountain.’ ” Kimmie went on to describe a big, lush green mountain with a river at the base. The book is about my ten-year journey searching for this mountain, searching for Kristi, searching for myself.

Merrie Lynn

So you began a journey... soul searching beyond the life you had known.

Donna

When Kristi died, I was the director of the symphony. I loved the arts, but after her death my attention turned to searching for answers to my questions: Why did this happen to me? Where is my daughter now? Is she ok? Can I connect with her? I began reading books on how to talk to dead people, books by mediums such as James Van Praagh and Sylvia Browne. I was amazed and excited to learn that our loved ones who have died can connect with us—try to connect, in fact—to let us know that they are fine and that they love us. Eventually my searching led me to other books like Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch. A whole new world was opening up for me as I delved into such topics as spirituality, angels, psychic abilities, metaphysics, the meaning of life. I began to realize that there is so much more to life than the reality we perceive with just our five senses. It was intriguing and I wanted to know more.

Merrie Lynn

The longing to connect with a loved one is sacred, so deeply rooted to source that it propels us to view life in a super conscious way. In the book you speak of the unseen, multi-dimensional world. Entering these paranormal realms, you write about hearing voices in your head. How did that feel at first?

Donna

It was a little scary. I wanted to be more connected to the angels, my spiritual guides and to my daughter, but when you first experience hearing voices it’s pretty unnerving. A friend had suggested I try this technique: take ten deep breaths and ask the angels, What do I need to know today? One morning while meditating and taking my ten deep breaths I heard a voice in my head say, “Quit your job.” I was startled. What was that? The first time I hear a voice and it’s telling me to quit my job? But deep down I knew my path was being guided, so I ended up quitting my job and starting my business, BellaSpark Productions.

Merrie Lynn
I t takes courage to follow your gut or intuitive voice. We often second-guess, analyze, or annihilate the messenger. What gave you the impetus to listen and the drive to go for it?

Donna

I wanted to meet these amazing teachers and visionaries, wanted to learn from them. And I wanted to share the wonderful information I was discovering with the many people who just like me were also searching for answers. Since none of these speakers ever came to my hometown, I decided I should be the one to bring them in. My intent with BellaSpark Productions was to ignite positive change in the world. Bella means beautiful in Italian, and since Kristi was the catalyst for me to begin this journey – she was a beautiful spark – I named the company after her. We began by doing events with these speakers, then added BellaSpark magazine.

Merrie Lynn

(smiles) Kristi is truly your divine partner. Working with BellaSpark put you in touch with spiritual masters, and super stars. How did they help you on your healing journey?

Donna

I have worked with many world-renowned visionaries and change-makers and discovered so much over the years. I learned about past lives, lives between lives and soul contracts. I began to understand the purpose of our life here on this earth plane. Most of all, I learned how to connect with my daughter and my guides and angels, and realized that we are always connected. Knowing that has helped me to heal and move forward in my life. There is an amazing Universe out there, multi-dimensions and unseen realms, so much more than we can imagine. It has been fascinating to explore and find the answers to my questions.

Merrie Lynn

That connection radiates from you Donna; it’s contagious, warm and caring. Once we connect with our angels and guides life is uplifted. We may have setbacks, but it won’t be the same. In the book you reference how these paranormal experiences affected your family as well.

Donna

My husband and my family went along with it when I would tell them, “I can feel Kristi and see her... she guides me.” Maybe because they could see it eased my suffering. They still think I’m a little crazy though. I was so excited to share the messages and signs I was receiving with other people that I would tell everyone I met. I discovered that most people have had an inexplicable encounter, and when you share your experience it opens them up to share theirs. It gives them permission to tell their story, and we intrinsically feel a deep connection.

Merrie Lynn

I love that you opened your heart even if someone thought you were off kilter. You treasured your gift of Kristi’s presence, and you didn’t compromise your truth. You write about your grandchildren and their ability to connect to the other side in the chapter, “Out of the Mouth of Babes.” How is it different for them?

Donna

Children are so tuned-in and there is so much to learn from them. My 6-year-old grandson began seeing and connecting with Kristi shortly after she died. One day, when I asked if he had seen Kristi lately, he told me, “She sits on the couch with me after school until my dad gets home.” Later that spring, when I asked if he still saw Kristi, he replied, “Yes. But sometimes I think I see her at school, and sometimes when I’m having trouble with my math she whispers the answer in my ear. Twenty five.’” he whispered. My grandchildren, as well as so many children today, come in with their ability to connect to the heavens still intact. Our job is to foster it and allow them to feel comfortable with it.

Merrie Lynn

Yes, Yes. Our children need our support of their greatness more than ever. They have the knowing and it is unconscionable to knock it out of them. Interfaith prayer, meditation, and spiritual practices to guide them are their birthright. You write about synchronicity and coincidental events that happened to you. Do you think you were being guided along the way?

Donna

Without a doubt, I know I was guided. I have experienced too many synchronistic events and happenings to believe otherwise. Messages and nudges that led me to doing events in Vancouver, BC, the uncanny coincidences that gave me the opportunity to work with Deepak Chopra, the people who have shown up in my life, so many signs and messages; it left no doubt in my mind that I needed to do this. I got the guidance and followed it.

Merrie Lynn

Many of us have callings but somehow we overlook them and miss the boat. We make excuses, put things off, and we don’t live our potential or our purpose, and in time our dreams fade into a distant memory. What to do?

Donna

It’s never too late to live your dream; as long as we’re here, the dream we brought with us when we first came in is still there, just waiting to come forth. Unfortunately, we get trapped in the way we think life is supposed to be, what society or our parents say is right for us, our responsibilities or our need for more stuff to prove we are somebody. We don’t listen to the nudging from our heart. We need to step back, meditate, and listen. We will be shown the way to our path, our purpose.

Merrie Lynn

Well put. We can become victims of our limited perceptions. In this busy upturned world we do need to step back and find a way to still the mind and start listening to the whispers − or it can become a quagmire of indecision and doubt. Do you find the more you practice, the more you live your meditation?

Donna

Yes, and it has redefined who I am. Meditating one morning by a small lake I heard a voice, “It’s time to let go of your story Donna – your story about Kristi, your relationship to your business, your story about who you are.” I realize I am not just a mother who lost a child and that my story doesn’t define me; just as my business BellaSpark doesn’t define me. I am a spiritual being and a child of God. Too often we get caught in the story of who we are based on the events of our lives, and it becomes our identity. Yet we are so much more than our past. It is time for us to create a new story.

Amazing, as I gazed at the lake that day, a tiny snake swam toward me. How perfect – snakes personify rebirth. I like to think I have been reborn. I am more in tune with my higher self, my guides and my daughter. I try to live in the present moment, for the past is done and the future is not here yet; the present is all we have. I am open to and embrace the gifts that life brings me, both the joy and the sorrow.

Merrie Lynn

Aha! You typically wear black. Today you are delightful in electric blue. Blue represents the throat chakra, the art of speaking your truth, immense creativity and inspiration. Wearing blue, you show up in blue pearl energy, coming out fully. Rebirth. Out of black. You are not mourning. What would Kristi say right now about your journey or future?

Donna

She is saying, “Good job – good job to all of us. To everyone on the planet making strides, stepping into their higher selves, raising their vibration – watching from her perspective − seeing the light ever expanding on the planet, ever growing in Love, it is beautiful.”

Merrie Lynn

Amazing. Thank you Kristi, I’m tingling with rays of light. Donna, you are amazing; there is so much wisdom you have to share with us. What is the most important thing you would like people to gain from your book?

Donna

I want everyone to know that there is life after death, both for those who have transitioned and for those of us left behind. That we can connect to not only to our loved ones, but our guides and angels. And we are not alone; we are being guided every moment. It’s important that we realize we are all Divine children of God, and part of a much bigger picture, a Divine plan for our soul’s evolution and the evolution of the planet. And it is all about Love.

Merrie Lynn

Ahhh, so refreshing − just to bathe in that Love. Donna you are an example for all of us to stay in the light, to grow, and to BE true.

Donna

Truly, my journey has been a process of coming from grief to life. And learning to live this blessed unfolding, day by day.

Merrie Lynn Ross – is an internationally acclaimed, multi-award winning filmmaker, actress, and author of 8 books. She is founder of MerrieWay Community that provides workshops, from Girl Scouts to venues in at-risk communities, and has served beside indigenous and opinion leaders globally. She recently received Gold Coast Film Fest’s Visionary Award, and WMIFF’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Washington, DC. www.merrieway.com