Remember that Aaliyah song, age ain’t nothin’ but a number? Well, in case you weren’t a fan or you’re too young to remember, the song was about being able to love whoever you want regardless of age. I’m sure this song was written during her brief stint of allegedly being married to R. Kelly at 16, but none the less the song makes a valid point! Age isn’t anything but a number, especially once you hit the age of being considered an adult. At that point you aren’t too young or too old to do anything. 
I’m a part of the minority cosplayers facebook page and I was inspired to write this blog based on a post one of the other members made. He expressed his disdain with the cosplay community and his thoughts of quitting for feeling ‘too old’. My first thought was Sheesh! I’m 26 and just getting started am I too old? But then I felt like I needed to encourage this individual. He was 30 years old and apparently feeling 75 by the way he was talking. Since we are in the same city I expressed an interest in meeting up and motivating each other and others encouraged him to link up with more people his age. Some cosplay groups and meet ups are full of ‘kids’, but from what I’ve experienced so far with this adventure is that you have to be willing to invest lots of money into your costumes. This leads me to believe, you have to have some kind of job or  have really rich supportive parents. So finding people 25 and up shouldn’t be too difficult, it hasn’t been for me!
I was always taught growing up that you are never too old to do the things you love or to go on new adventures. If anything it keeps you young and vibrant, keeps you alive. If we all decided we were too old to do things we would be the most depressed civilization to exist. We would eat the same thing everyday, wake up, go to work, come home, and go to sleep. What would there be to live for? Paying our bills?! I mean we have to pay our bills, but we shouldn’t LIVE to do that! We should live for the things and the people we love.
A lot of the people that I have met who cosplay are my age or older. None of them felt too old; in fact, they’re stoked for their next costume. They’re excited to get their kids dressed up to get a family cosplay going on! 
On a personal level outside of cosplay this topic resonates for me as an actor. There are days where I question my career path and my goals. I wonder, am I getting too old? Is it time for me to ‘grow up’ already. The reality is I am grown! Theater and acting is what I love! When I’m on stage, in front of a camera, or singing to the back row, I’m alive!
Viola Davis inspires me beyond words. She has been in the business since what probably seems like forever to her and she has paid her dues. She didn’t let anyone tell her she was too old and she needed to give it up when she had her down moments. She focused on what kept her blood pumping, her craft.
We get so caught up sometimes in what other people think of us and what they think of what were doing with our lives and our time. You are never too young, old, black, white, or anything to do the things that make you happy. Live for you and no one else. 


Marjie Southerland is an actor/singer/mover/shaker from New Jersey, living “The Dream” in Chicago,IL. Check out her website www.marjiesoutherland.com and ‘like’ her on facebook to stay posted on all of her adventures!