Serena and Venus Williams had huge tennis dreams. Hailing from Compton, the Williams were not the richest family but the parents had faith that Serena and her sister would accomplish many things in the future. As her career progressed, Serena started getting verbally attacked by people because of the way her body was built. The media kept criticizing her for being too “strong” or “manly”. Some people would even say that she was too strong to play tennis. However, the negative comments did not stop her from reaching her highest potential.
Photo by Ken Levine
“Think of all the girls who could become top athletes but quit sports because they’re afraid of having too many defined muscles and being made fun of or called unattractive.”
– Serena Williams
Just recently at the French Open, Williams sparked a controversy when she wore a Nike catsuit to play in the tournament. It was banned later on with the tournament’s president Bernard Giudicelli stating, “You have to respect the game and the place.” The catsuit was specifically designed to help her with blood clots; an issue that she has been dealing with after giving birth last year. Serena simply dismissed the comments and continued to play the sport she loves.
Photo by Paper Mag
Serena has accomplished a lot in her life. She fought the harsh words of the media and still managed to keep a positive outlook despite the negativity. I’ve always wonder how women like her wake up in the morning and ignore the hate they get from the media. Personally, whenever I hear negative things said about me, I often let it affect me. However, Serena chooses to ignore it and even uses it as motivation. She is a strong woman who motivates me to become a better woman. Her passion and dignity always amazes me. She did not let the hate stop her from reaching her goals. That is what I admire about her the most; receiving plenty of hate and still coming out victorious.
As a young woman, I believe that we should all look up to women like Serena Williams. Her dedication is one of the many reasons she inspires so many young girls all over the world to pursue their goals. She has beaten so many odds over the years and it baffles me that people still criticize her. She makes me want to be better because she proves that if I believe in myself, nothing could stop me from reaching my goals.
We all have doubters. There are people out there who don’t believe that we can do amazing things. Serena’s message to us is to ignore the hate, rise up and win. That is the message I will continue to repeat in my head for the rest of my life. We all have goals and we should never let anyone or anything stop us from achieving them.