With the countdown quickly approaching to her due date, legendary tennis star Serena Williams opened up to Vanity Fair about impending motherhood, fiancé Alexis Ohanian, and more.
Williams gave the world a glimpse of her nude, pregnant form in newly released photos taken by world-renown photographer Annie Leibovitz.
Via Vanity Fair:
[Serena on finding out she was pregnant]: “I put [the pregnancy test] down. I went back to finishing hair and makeup, was laughing, talking. I was getting the styling done. An hour and a half later, I went back to the bathroom and I totally forgot about it because it was impossible for me. . . . So I went back to get dressed and I went back in the bathroom and I was like, ‘Oh yeah, that test.’ [I] did a double take and my heart dropped. Like literally it dropped. “Oh my God, this can’t be—I’ve got to play a tournament,” said Serena. “How am I going to play the Australian Open? I had planned on winning Wimbledon this year.”
[On when she knew her fiancé was going to propose]: “I knew it was coming. I was like, ‘Serena, you’re 35, you’re ready. This is what you want.’ ” Alexis then proceeded to retell the story of how he had met her for the first time at this exact spot two years earlier before getting on one knee to propose.
Williams also revealed that she is definitely not giving up her highly distinguished tennis career due to motherhood and marriage, stating she will return to the tennis circuit in January after giving birth because, as she puts it, “I don’t think my story is over yet.”
She also reflects on how you simply can’t predict how things in life will go, saying, “If you would have told me last year in October or November that I would have a baby, not be pregnant but have a baby, I would have thought you were the biggest liar in the world. This is kind of how I am right now. This is happening sooner than later, and it’s going by so fast.”
In other news, Williams is still battling the bitterness of the White patriarchy after ESPN analyst and former tennis pro John McEnroe said he wouldn’t place Williams as the best tennis player in the world, especially next to male tennis players.
“That doesn’t mean I don’t think Serena is an incredible player. I do. But the reality of what would happen on a given day is Serena could beat some players, I believe, because she is so incredibly strong mentally,” McEnroe said in a Sunday interview with NPR. “But if she had to just play the circuit — the men’s circuit — that would be an entirely different story.”
On Monday Williams clapped back on Twitter:
Game. Set. Match.
This woman played and won the title during the Australian Open with a belly full of baby. Give her the respect she deserves.
You can check out the full Vanity Fair cover story on newsstands July 2.