There's something so special about becoming a mother that inevitably makes you appreciate your own mom so much more. Most of the time, being a mom changes you, and that certainly seems to be the case with everyone's favorite tennis pro. Seriously, Serena Williams' open letter to her mom will give you all the feels, and it might make you reach for the phone and call up your own mom as well.
Williams gave birth to her first child on Sept. 1, and since then, has blessed the world with frequent updates on her daughter's life — and yes, plenty of sweet, sweet pictures. Williams' daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr., also has her own Instagram account which already has over 50,000 followers. So, it's no surprise that Williams has now opened up about how becoming a mom has made her truly value her own mother and the way she was raised. Of course, Williams published the letter on Reddit, which her fiancé, Alexis Ohanian, co-founded. In fact, Williams also used Reddit to announce her engagement to Ohanian, proving once and for all, that the two truly are a power couple.
And as sweet as Williams' words are, the message behind them is also incredibly important.
"Dear Mom," Williams began the letter, "You are one of the strongest women I know." And trust me, it only gets sweeter from there:
I was looking at my daughter (OMG, yes, I have a daughter) and she has my arms and legs! My exact same strong, muscular, powerful, sensational arms and body. I don't know how I would react if she has to go through what I've gone through since I was a 15 year old and even to this day.
Williams' letter wasn't just about praising her mom, though she did do that as well. The new mom also recalled being teased and made fun of when she was younger just because of how she looked. "I've been called [a] man because I appeared outwardly strong," she wrote. And truly, Williams totally nails it on the head when it comes to sexism and racism.
And Williams didn't hold back in her letter either, nor should she. Throughout her career, Williams has been called just about every name in the book, and it makes sense that she would worry about her precious daughter going through the exact same struggles:
It has been said I don't belong in Women's sports -- that I belong in Men's -- because I look stronger than many other women do. (No, I just work hard and I was born with this badass body and proud of it)... But mom, I'm not sure how you did not go off on every single reporter, person, announcer and quite frankly, hater, who was too ignorant to understand the power of a black woman.
Clearly, little Alexis is going to grow up to be strong, proud, and powerful. With Williams as a mom, though, that isn't really too shocking.
Williams then went on to praise her mom, Oracene Price, for being an excellent source of inspiration for Williams her entire life, and especially now that she's a mom. She wrote:
You are so classy, I only wish I could take your lead. I am trying, though, and God is not done with me yet. I have a LONG way to go, but thank you... Thank you for being the role model I needed to endure all the hardships that I now regard as a challenges--ones that I enjoy. I hope to teach my baby Alexis Olympia the same, and have the same fortitude you have had.
Because seriously, while society may have come a long way, there is still way too much sexism and racism plaguing the world. Everyone needs that headstrong, powerful role model in their life — and Williams' letter proves that sometimes, if you're lucky, that person is your mom.
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