Considering Serena Williams opened up to BFF Meghan Markle, during an appearance on her “Archeytpes” podcast, about the double standards she’s had to battle throughout her career (via Buzzfeed News), it was wonderful to see the tennis player saying goodbye to the industry firmly on her own terms. Serena announced her retirement in an essay for Vogue, confirming the US Open would be her final time competing professionally.
However, the athlete, who’s widely considered one of the greatest of all time, clarified that she considers her next move an “evolution” away from tennis. “I have never liked the word retirement,” Serena admitted. “Maybe the best word to describe what I’m up to is evolution. I’m here to tell you that I’m evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me.”
One of the biggest reasons to move on, as Serena revealed, was her daughter, Olympia, whom she feels is more important. “I never wanted to have to choose between tennis and a family. I don’t think it’s fair,” she wrote. “If I were a guy, I wouldn’t be writing this because I’d be out there playing and winning while my wife was doing the physical labor of expanding our family.” The 23-time grand slam singles champion did note, however, the decision isn’t a painless one, and certainly not something she takes lightly. But it has to be done.