Serena Williams, the reigning US Open tennis champion, declared on Tuesday that “the countdown has begun” to her retirement from the game.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion Williams continued by saying that it is now time for her to change her course in life.
The 40-year-old stated in an Instagram post that she needs to prioritize being a mother while still pursuing her spiritual development.
She wrote, “There comes a time in life when we have to decide to move in a different direction. That time is always hard when you love something so much. My goodness, do I enjoy tennis? But now, the countdown has begun.
“I have to focus on being a mom, my spiritual goals, and finally discovering a different, but just exciting Serena. I’m gonna relish these next few weeks.”
Williams said in an exclusive interview with Vogue that she never liked the word “retirement” and would much rather use the word “evolution.”
She said, “I have never liked the word retirement. It doesn’t feel like a modern word to me. I’ve been thinking of this as a transition, but I want to be sensitive about how I use that word, which means something very specific and important to a community of people.
“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.
“A few years ago, I quietly started Serena Ventures, a venture capital firm. Soon after that, I started a family. I want to grow that family.”