Melinda Armstrong

Voices With Purpose: Meet my new friend and fellow dream diva, Joan Cartwright

In Uncategorized on May 21, 2010 at 6:49 pm

“All the Joy that you can find is waiting in the magic of a dream…..”

~Joan Cartwright, DREAMIN’

This is the line I heard as I sat down to scribble this blog entry.

“Make sure everything you do means peace and joy for you…”

And she sings…

“Don’t stop hoping that happiness will find you….”

And in that moment, I knew…

God, I was meant to meet this woman.  If for no other reason than this moment when her CD (which she kindly gifted to me today when I purchased her beautiful book about her life’s journey) was playing in the background of my taps on the computer keyboard.

I am happy to say that my attitude when I attend networking events is that each person I encounter has a gift for me.  I know that I must study their faces and look into their eyes for the gift.  It might not present itself in the moment when I am with them.  The gift might surface hours (or days or weeks) after the first meeting.  Joan was different.  I knew the moment she stood to talk that there was something magical about her.

This woman has presence.  Not unusual for a Diva Songstress, I know.  However, I believe that if you put her on stage with 100 other Diva Songstresses, she would still stand out.  She is a woman who was placed here to be heard via spoken word, written word, and music.

And she speaks.  She said to me rather matter-of-factly while we chatted in the parking lot after the networking event, “You have nice hair, why don’t you take it out from under all that?” referring to my curly hair weave that saves me from the daily chore of curling my hair after the gym each morning.  “Just cut it off!” she told me – ME, a virtual stranger!  I had to respect her voice.  She is one of those women who will be heard, even if not obeyed.  I confess I contemplated her suggestion for a moment.  I’m not there and I felt sort of bad that I couldn’t just embrace that idea!  Damn, why don’t I just wear a flipping afro?  Black IS beautiful baby, right?  I’m not there.  She punctuated her recommendation by confidently stating that I, too, would be 60 years old some day.  This I took to mean that she believes I will eventually acquiesce and go weaveless and natural and short.  We’ll see.

Joan and I squeezed in a lot of sharing in the few moments we chatted in the parking lot.  We talked about being a musician, about how we treat (or mistreat) our bodies, and the collective mission of all women: mutual empowerment.  It was a rich conversation; one that I pray I have the opportunity to continue.

We all need women like Diva JC in our lives.  Her voice makes our voices stronger.  Everyone has a vision, yes?  Joan reminded me of my dream: to use my voice.  It must be her dream too.  And she lives it.  Standing up and anointing the group with the call to support and encourage other women, especially those who do not have husbands at home to support and encourage them, Joan let her truth out.  Joan dreams out loud.  She does the thing I believe we must all do.  We must take our dreams out of hiding, even if it means stepping gently on our friends’ toes.  But she steps on them with love.  Joan is the perfect kind of bold.  You listen because she is confident in her dream to use her voice.  She has something to say and to sing.  And she sings the reminder to us all…

“Keep on dreamin, cuz only they come true…”

I am Joan! I am!

Peace & Blessings,


Joan Cartwright is a woman with a purpose.

She is the Founder and Executive Director of


Listen to her on Blog Talk Radio at


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: