Serena Williams has penned a heart-touching letter to her mother after giving birth to her first child with fiancé and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian. The tennis pro has thanked Oracene Price for being her pillar of support at a time when she was ridiculed for her physical appearance. She also compared her newborn daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr's early physical likeness to herself.
"Dear Mom, You are one of the strongest women I know. 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," the 35-year-old wrote on Reddit.
Williams said that she could not imagine how she would react if her little girl had to go through what she has gone through since she turned 15 — being called a man and "accused of doing drugs" to boost her physical prowess in the courts. Haters had asked her to try her luck at playing against men just "because I look stronger than many other women do".
"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," she said
"I am proud we were able to show them what some women look like. We don't all look the same. We are curvy, strong, muscular, tall, small, just to name a few, and all the same: we are women and proud!"
Calling Price "classy", Williams said she has been trying to follow the examples her mother has laid out for her and "God is not done with me yet. I have a LONG way to go".
"Thank you for being the role model I needed to endure all the hardships that I now regard as challenges — ones that I enjoy. I hope to teach my baby Alexis Olympia the same, and have the same fortitude you have had."
"Promise me, Mom, that you will continue to help. I'm not sure if I am as meek and strong as you are yet. I hope to get there one day. I love you dearly. Your youngest of five, Serena."