Serena Williams has transcended the activity of tennis, becoming an icon in tennis, sport, business, motherhood, and humanity. In her very own words, she determines her lasting legacy and story.
Serena Williams has been the facial skin of womens tennis for such a long time, its difficult to assume the activity without her. As shes done throughout her illustrious career (and life), she penned a poignantly moving essay on her behalf retirement on her behalf own terms, in her very own words.
And you also really should browse the forthright, eloquent statement in its entirety.
Ive written a whole lot about Serena Williams through the entire years. Shes set the typical for womens tennis for many years. Weren’t just discussing the athletic greatness, but additionally how women are valued in the activity, how shes elevated that very valuation to sustained heights, and how shes impacted the significance of womens tennis globally.
To speak about Serena Williams would be to discuss the trailblazer, who outsold mens finals, who translated her incredible presence right into a billion-dollar business empire and capital raising firm, Serena Ventures, not to mention who pushed the narrative forward for womens equity in the activity. The majority of the following quotes come directly from Serenas stirring personal essay.
I started playing tennis with the purpose of winning the U.S. Open. I didnt think past that. And I simply kept winning. I recall when I passed Martina Hingiss grand slam count. Then Seless. And I tied Billie Jean King, who’s this inspiration for me personally due to how she’s pioneered gender equality in every sports. Then it had been climbing on the Chris EvertMartina Navratilova mountain.
Along with her incredible athletic gifts, Serenas journey as a mother in addition has been completely inspiring. In all respects of motherhood, she’s once more set a higher benchmark, and exactly like her retirement announcement, she’s raised five-year-old Olympia (alongside husband Alexis Ohanian) in a manner that further demonstrates her greatness and self-determination. The truth that she’s maintained the best of standards in both (you can vote her mother of the entire year and player of the entire year simultaneously!) makes her a lot more awe-inspiring.
Serena Williams couldve been the Tom Brady of tennis, but forged her very own path by her very own rules.
Serena Williams may have simply end up being the Tom Brady of tennis, having babies or leaving the baby-carrying to others (surrogacy may have easily been a choice), and continued climbing the mountain of tennis prowess until Infinitum. If she hadnt given birth to baby Olympia, who knows where in fact the 40-year-old will be sitting in the majors tally? The 23-time slam champion reflected just as much.
.@serenawilliams on retiring: Trust me, I never wished to have to select from tennis and a family group. I dont think its fair. EASILY were a man, I wouldnt be writing this.
I’m honored to possess watched her play also to walk the planet earth in her lifetime.
Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) August 9, 2022
Just how I view it, I should experienced 30-plus grand slams. I had my chances after returning from having a baby. I went from the C-section to another pulmonary embolism to a grand slam final. I played while breastfeeding. I played through postpartum depression. But I didnt make it happen. Shoulda, woulda, coulda. I didnt arrive the way I will have or may have. But I arrived 23 times, and thats fine. Actually its extraordinary.
Serenas icon status has been earned partly by her astonishing capability to remain true to herself and her honest reflection of how motherhood transformed her life is testament to her humanity. An excellent person is fantastic because they prefer to get, not due to anyone elses directive.
Earlier in my own career, I never considered having kids. There have been occasions when Ive wondered easily should ever bring kids into this world, with all its problems I figured that when I ever did have a child, I’d have people looking after it 24/7. Im not likely to lieI definitely have plenty of support. But Im also a remarkably hands-on mother. My hubby will let you know I’m too hands-on. In five years, Olympia has only spent one 24-hour period from me. Recently, while I was dealing with a hamstring injury, I got eventually to pick her up from school 4 or 5 days weekly, and I usually looked forward to seeing her face light when she walked out from the building and saw me waiting there on her behalf. The truth is that there is nothing a sacrifice for me personally with regards to Olympia. Everything just is practical.
As she states her plans of an imminent retirement, this video of Serena Williams announcing herself to the sporting world should make everyone smile.
Fitting that shell likely retire in NY, where she won her first slam pic.twitter.com/s1PWtTPXrO
Olly (@Olly_2022) August 9, 2022
When youre great, everyone really wants to share a bit of what they perceive equals your significance. Earlier calls by legendary peers Billie Jean King and Chris Evertwho penned an open letter to the effecttried to motivate Serena to only concentrate on tennis and her race for majorsare but several types of others seeing just a small section of who she genuinely is.
Still, a question lingers do you consider your invest history? Could it be something you value? For a while you might be pleased with the many things going on that you experienced, but I wonder whether 20 years from now you may reflect on your job and regret not putting 100 percent of yourself into tennis, wrote Evert in 2006. Because whether you wish to admit it or not, these distractions are tarnishing your legacy.
ButSerena is definitelya lot more than just the activity she conquered: a rare, beautiful one who is determining her second act which includes inspiring another generation within her very own family along with the global populace.
But nowadays, if I need to select from building my tennis rsum and building my children, I pick the latter.
She could be retiring in one facet of her extraordinary, iconic life, but she actually is continuing to fuel her love, generosity and expect the near future through her philanthropy and expansion of her fulfilling family.
Serena Williams resume is unlike any
39 Grand Slam titles (23 singles, 14 doubles, 2 mixed doubles)
73 singles titles, 23 doubles titles
4 Olympic gold medals
319 weeks ranked No. 1 pic.twitter.com/GyaI7i14re
Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) August 9, 2022
In my life, the total amount has been slowly shifting toward Serena Ventures. I usually say that Im a sponge: During the night I go to sleep and I squeeze myself out so the next day I could take up just as much new information when i can. Each morning, Im so excited to walk downstairs to my office and jump onto Zooms and begin reviewing decks of companies were considering buying. This season we raised $111 million of outside financing, from banks, private individuals, and family offices. Seventy-eight percent of our portfolio is actually companies started by women and folks of color, because thats who we have been.
Serena Williams record will stay an astonishing bastion of excellence. Also to put things in perspective, her long set of tennis accomplishments includes:
- Owns 23 grand slam singles trophies (that is the record for the Open Era)
- Only tennis playermale or femaleto win three of the four Grand Slams at the very least 6 times.
- Won the WTA Tour Championships five times.
- Alongside her sister, Venus, Serena owns the 3rd most doubles majors.
- She shares the record with Venus with Olympic Gold medals such as three doubles and something in singles (for every of them, that is absolutely incredible), and the only real ladies in the Open Era to win Gold in both categories.
- Oldest player to attain world No. 1 (April 2017) at age 35 years, half a year.
- Oldest player to win a grand slam title at 35 years, four months, when she achieved her last major at the 2017 Australian Open (when she was 8 weeks pregnant!).
- Won 14 womens doubles majors
- Became worlds highest paid female athlete in 2016, with earnings of almost $29 million.
- Was awarded the Laureus Sportswoman of the entire year award four times (2003, 2010, 2016, 2018).
- Was named Sportsperson of the entire year by Sports Illustrated in December 2015.
- Highest earning female athlete ever (another GOAT stats to increase the stack).
- Owns 73 WTA titles.
- Won one Fed Cup team title (1999)
- Won two Hopman Cup mixed team titles (2003, 2008).
Those amazing stats aside, on your day she puts down her racquet going back timeto occur as of this years U.S. Open she’ll remain one of the biggest champions the planet has ever seen.
However the lack of tennis will undoubtedly be one section of a complex, remarkable one who will continue steadily to increase her impressive legacy. We shall watch her future endeavors with rapt attention.