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Erma H's 40 over 40 Portrait Experience

February 12, 20244 min read

Loving, caring, and family oriented, Erma radiates warmth and compassion. Her life story, filled with significant moments of empowerment and self-discovery, showcases a spirit that has overcome many challenges. “Life is too short to not give it your all”, she says.

From embracing motherhood and venturing into self-employment to delving into profound self-discovery and confidence later in her life, Erma navigates life with tenacity and grace.  It was her foray into the world of dance at 41 that not only added a new layer to her life but also served as a transformative catalyst, filling her with newfound confidence and vibrant energy.

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Erma's life journey spans decades, marked by different experiences in each chapter. When she was in her twenties, she became a mother and started her own business. In her thirties, she dealt with military life and the struggles that came with it. Her forties brought challenges such as going through a divorce and discovering more about herself. Her fifties were all about starting fresh. She found love and got married, bought a home, started a business, and had many small adventures that brought her much contentment and joy. She navigated through the grief of losing her husband in her 60s. Now in her seventies, she is on a quest to liberate herself from the opinions of others and find happiness again. Her journey through ups and downs has led her to be known as an "Overcomer." Each part of her life has added to her strength and resilience, making Erma the strong and amazing person she is today.

Her many powerful moments of empowerment are evident in Erma's participation in dance competitions and entrepreneurial endeavors. Adventures like riding in a helicopter, swimming with stingrays, and navigating life independently become amazing milestones in her life. The loss of her husband in 2020 revealed Erma's strength as she navigated grief. 

“I have become more confident with my body and my abilities in myself. I used to be very shy and didn't like to draw attention to myself”, shares Erma. Supported by her second husband, she gains newfound confidence, walking confidently in her own skin. 

For Erma, loving herself means keeping a positive attitude. She stresses the value of looking after herself by regularly exercising and sticking to healthy eating habits. Erma shares that she includes daily walks in her routine when the weather is nice, making sure she stays active and tuned into her well-being.

Erma's view of beauty goes beyond the surface; it radiates from within. She defies societal expectations of beauty and age, dancing to her own tune and proving that age is just a number. Facing societal pressure to 'do it all,' Erma responds with laughter, refusing to conform. Her philosophy echoes the idea that age shouldn't dictate one's actions, and she embraces life's different roles with joy.

Committing to looking her best everyday makes Erma feel beautiful. She has a routine that includes the daily creativity of putting on makeup and putting in thought and the care into styling her hair. The happiness of having a wardrobe filled with clothes she truly enjoys also matters to her. In these daily habits, Erma discovers a wellspring of beauty that mirrors her dedication to expressing herself and taking care of herself.

“My grandma’s sense of style was amazing. She was always dressed to the nines. Her dress and accessories always matched”, she reflects fondly. Erma finds inspiration in her grandma, Eva Johnson's, stylish elegance, and her mother, Edith Goss's, unwavering work ethic. She encourages women to embrace what makes them feel beautiful and confident. Erma envisions staying youthful and healthy, even considering the idea of trying a bit of modeling in the future.

Erma's decision to join the "40 over 40 Portrait Experience and Exhibition" is a bold statement of self-confidence and a message to women everywhere—be proud, embrace your beauty, and break free from societal expectations. The experience has energized her, offering a freeing look at how others see her.

Encouraging fellow women to take a similar path, Erma enthusiastically says, "Just do it!!! It's one of the best choices you can make." Her fondest memory from the portrait experience is injecting her personality into the shoot, a joint effort that made the experience uniquely hers. “‘WOW!’, was my first thought when I saw the photos. I was nervous on the way to the appointment but my nerves were gone the minute I saw them”, she shares with a smile. 

In a sincere moment of thought, Erma encourages everyone to make the most of life, uplift others, and share happiness through small acts of kindness. In her final words, she suggests sharing smiles because they can be the little moments that brighten someone's day—an expression of the positivity that Erma embodies in her own life journey.


Celebrate yourself by gifting yourself your own 40 over 40 Portrait Experience & Exhibition. https://www.maggiemesser.com/40-over-40-portrait-exhibition

Listen to Erma's Inspiration about feeling beautiful


40 OVER 40 MAGAZINE

Featuring the women at the Feb 3, 2024 Exhibition

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