Wednesday, April 21, 2010


This whole Giovanna thing was a scam; the only reason I am leaving this post up is to show any unsuspecting good hearted people the sick ways people play on us in cyber world. I set aside my life for weeks for this person/people, and eventually called authorities in Florida when the "supposed" family member told me he was sexually abusing the young girl. I spoke with a detective who ran Giovanna's and the family member, Nick, through their databases. Neither name came up, and when I confronted the "supposed" family member about it, he immediately logged off. I do not know whose pictures these are, but I have left them up as well, in case they try and lure anyone else into their scam. The detective in Florida said it was a matter of time before they began asking for money. I no longer have any contact with either of them, but I do see the Giovanna identity on yahoo quite frequently, so they are still around preying on unsuspecting souls. Please don't let it be you.

I have sorely neglected this blog for one reason....Giovanna Katie Phillips. Who is she?
I met Giovanna on a live African animal webcam*. We sit around and watch a waterhole that is located in South Africa and wait for animals to come around. We get to hear the sounds of the birds, crickets, snorts, and growls of the animals...but the best part is, there is a chat forum. We talk to each other, and leave posts of when we see animals.
So one of the other viewers saw my FaceBook ID and sent me a friend request. As usual, before accepting a friend request, I checked out her info on her FaceBook page. Her age was listed as 19, but the picture of the young lady swimming with a dolphin looked much younger. And there was another picture of her in a hospital bed; I could see that she had lost her hair.

Well, I thought it was a bit odd that someone so young would want to 'friend' me, but I always figure someone comes into your life for a reason, so I accepted.

Week after week we spent many hours at that waterhole, while chatting on a private line. I found out she was only 13. I waited for some time before I finally asked her what her illness was. She told me straight out she had stage 4 chronic myelogen leukemia. I didn't ask too much because I didn't want to intrude. So I did an internet search and found out that a bone marrow transplant was going to be the only hope for a cure for her. She told me that she was waiting to see a lion until she died. My first response was "Well I hope we never get to see a lion then."

Day after day I woke up and first thing, I would go to the waterhole and of course Giovanna was already there, usually asking if anyone had seen a lion. Night after night we spent talking like two school girls staying up way past our bedtimes, and listening to growls that were always lurking in the background..."did you hear that?", "was that a lion?"

She told me of a horrific childhood; worse than you could ever imagine, and I think I will leave it at that. Except to say that she was rescued from that environment, and is now in a loving home. She was made to feel so unloved that it is hard for her accept that she is worth anything at all. And even though she has been with her new family for 8months, it has not been nearly enough time to erase all the hurt she suffered up to that point.

I seriously began to wonder why this young lady had come into my life and wrapped herself around my heart? I did some research on the bone marrow program. I talked it over with the hubster, and told him, I couldn't forgive myself if all she needed was a bone marrow transplant and I didn't speak up and offer. I was trying to figure out how I was going to accomplish all this (because you have to be within so many miles of the recipient) when she told me she already had a match.

In fact Giovanna was set to have her bone marrow transplant last Monday. When she went in, they discovered that she had a lung infection, which set her back. Just to give you a clue on how tough this cookie is: One night she was running a temperature of almost 103 and it took me almost 2 hours to convince her that she needed to wake someone in her house so they could monitor her fever. She didn't want to bother anyone....huh? At that point, I asked her how would I know if something were to happen to her? And she told me a family member would post it.

Well, the lung infection got worse, she had to be admitted to the hospital. And one morning when I logged on it wasn't Giovanna talking to me anymore; it was a family member. He said we needed to start praying because things were touch and go. He also asked if I could rally people to send emails and pictures of lions. Within 12 hours there were over 100 lions sent to her and they still kept coming.

I began asking every place I could think of for people to pray. My first stop was the waterhole that she loves so much, and then onto Etsy in the forums. When I was finished with that, I began submitting her name to prayer groups all over...any where I could get people to listen, I asked.

Within a couple of days her health took a turn for the better and it appeared she was on the mend again...and then Monday night she had a heart attack...

She is now in an induced coma and she URGENTLY needs your prayers. We are not giving up on this beautiful young lady. With everything she had to endure in her young life, it is high time she is allowed to be healthy and know what a pain free, happy, loving, life feels like.

I still don't know why Giovanna has entered my life, but I refuse to believe that it's to be snatched away from me...I never told her I loved her, and it's going to be the first thing I tell her when I see her next.
May the courage and strength of the lion bring you back to us Giovanna

Until next time,



*I put a link to the webcam site, but lately it's been spotty at best; bad storms have been making it difficult for them to keep the camera operating.


Anonymous said...

WE are continuing to pray for God's perfect will to be done in the life of this dear one. He loves her so much and has already used her life to impact so many.

kittyd said...

Oh my this beautiful, sweet young lady has been through so much already. I will keep her in my thoughts and prayers. (((Hugs))) to you for posting this, to this Giovanna, and to her loving family.


inkwear99 said...

This brave young lady is an amazing spirit for all that she has been through. Sending our thoughts, prayers and well wishes.

NaiveCraftGirl said...

I'm still praying for this little girl!

What an amazing story, she needs to be around to tell it herself! I hope she dosen't get to see that lion anytime soon, too.

saffery moore said...

found out about Giovana through the etsy forums... am praying!

Angel Scents said...

Praying for this sweet young lady and will continue to do so. We ask why do things like this happen but God has plans for this little girl and will hold her close. God Bless you sweetheart, we are all praying for you! ♥

Christie Cottage said...

Oh, Cindi... Giovanna was just lifted up in prayer again.

Tomorrow a lion will be on my blog for Giovanna.

JewelryBySolange said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hello Cindi:
That was a beautiful blog about your friendship with this very special young lady.
I too believe that everyone we meet comes into our lives for a reason, even if that meeting or encounter lasts 5 minutes. Sometimes we don't recognize the benefit of unexpectantly meeting someone then one day it occurs to us that either a lesson was there to be learned or we had a positive impact on that person.

Well it's clear to all of us the impact your kindness has had on this little girl. You have a wonderful heart. That was evident when I spoke with you yesterday.

Regardless of the outcome which I pray is a positive one for Giovanna, your giving of your friendship through caring & kindness is something you should be proud of. She saw something in you & you responded. What seems insignificant to some is very significant to a girl like Giovanna. Thank you on behalf of Giovanna for being there when she called out. You proved to that little girl that there are loving people in this world & that regardless of her past, she is lovable.
Sorry for rambling, but this whole story has touched my heart big time. Makes me miss the work I used to do that I shared with you.
If theres anything you need or if you need a friend to talk with, you know how to reach me.
God Bless You!
Robert a/k/a Bobby G.

sammysgrammy said...

Cindi, thank you for bring Giovanna to our attention. It is a pleasure to bring her needs to the throne of grace and mercy. Praying.........

Wicked Darling said...

Hang in there Giovanna! Our prayers are being lifted up and being heard.

Anonymous said...

What an amazing story, it brought tears to my eyes. She is and will continue to be in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

This story is heartbreaking and uplifting at the same time: hundreds of people who neither know each other nor the little girl coming together, sending out prayers and positive wishes, sharing tears and private thoughts, taking part in Giovanna's life for a few minutes and touching her soul. To say she is a lucky girl doesn't sound right in light of the condition of her physical body, but her inner self is truly special. Not many people have the power to attract so many positive wishes and are in the thoughts of so many people. Gentle hugs to you, Giovanna!

button said...

Precious Giovanna. Praying for you.

Warm Touch Creations said...

What a heartbreaking time. My prayers of healing and peace to her and all who are so involved and touched by this young girl. It is so very hard, not to ask God why? But He has a reason to allow all that we must face in life, and I know that He gives the strength and peace to face each one. My prayers and Big hugs of love are with you Giovanna!

Graceful Moments said...

This is so heartbreaking. It is impossible for us to understand why this precious child has had to endure such suffering in her life. I know that each life has a purpose and I know that God has a reason for this but it is so very hard to comprehend. My heart aches for Giovanna and her new family and for you, who became her friend and filled a need in her life. God bless you. I will be praying for a miracle.

Graceful Moments said...

Cindi, I just came from the water hole and read some disturbing comments, that make this story even more heart breaking. Please read Bobby G's comments. I was going to try to say something quite similar but Bobby has said it so eloquently there is no need for me to add much to it. I am praying for Giovanna and for you and for her family. We never know how God will use us and we often never know why He has, but I believe that He always has a plan and purpose for each of our lives. Sometimes, that purpose is befriending a lonely girl who needed someone to talk with her.
Sometimes that purpose is to bring people together for a common cause of prayer and fellowship. God bless you and your kind and caring heart.

RoadToGrinnell said...

I heard about this lovely young lady through ChristieCottage's blog. I will be praying!

Anonymous said...

I too heard from christieCottage.
Prayers to her.

Erica said...

What a touching story and a beautiful young girl!

Anonymous said...

hi.. just dropping by here... have a nice day!