“That’s the Crazy Part”: Serena Williams Details Her Migraine Attacks and Challenges of Being a Mom to Olympia

Published 04/05/2021, 11:38 PM EDT
TORONTO, ON – AUGUST 11: Serena Williams of the United States becomes upset after withdrawing from the final match against Bianca Andreescu of Canada due to a back injury on Day 9 of the Rogers Cup at Aviva Centre on August 11, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)


Serena Williams is one of the few athletes who has inspired the world with more than the sport. Battling through fatal illnesses, standing tall in adversity, and going on despite the challenges is inspirational.

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Recently, the 39-year-old American opened about her experience with migraines and also shared some valuable advice. For this, she collaborated with Ubrelvy, prescribed medicine that helped the tennis queen forget about her migraine attacks.

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Serena Williams suffered from migraines from a young age

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – FEBRUARY 03: Serena Williams of the United States is seen during the set break in her match against Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria during day four of the WTA 500 Yarra Valley Classic at Melbourne Park on February 03, 2021, in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)

Growing up, Serena Williams already had an intense daily schedule lined up for her. Additionally, suffering from a migraine and unable to do anything about it made things worse for her.

“I’ve always had migraines, but I don’t think I realised what they were until I was in my 20s. I remember being younger and having to stop training, and I would always complain to my mom, ‘I have a headache’. But I never connected that it was actually a migraine,” Serena said.

Furthermore, the 23-time Grand Slam champion revealed that her first symptom of migraine is sensitivity to light. Also, she revealed that her experience with traditional treatments kept her from practising, which was ‘no fun’.

Serena continued, “It’s a horrible situation to be in when you are doing your job, and if you are doing something like me, it’s really not good to be in. It’s like I have to play someone that wants to win against me, and I have to play against my migraine, so I have two opponents.”

In the end, the American found Ubrelvy and instantly forgot about her migraine. However, she highlighted a vital point on how women ignore the pain and the discomfort.

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Williams on being a mom and advise for other moms

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – JANUARY 12: Serena Williams of the USA celebrates with daughter Alexis Olympia after winning the final match against Jessica Pegula of the USA at ASB Tennis Centre on January 12, 2020, in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Serena Williams has a three-year-old daughter Olympia, who is not far from being her soulmate. That is one of the reasons why the American urged other mothers too.

“Women do everything; we are moms, we come home and cook, we do all the work, and it’s just what we do. We don’t take time for ourselves; I know I don’t. Because I think I don’t want to, and that’s the crazy part because we need to. But I am like ‘I don’t want to; I’d rather be with Olympia’,” she added.

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To sum up, Serena shared some pearls about experiencing pain. She said, “Just because you are tough does not mean you have to be in pain.”

To this day, the four-time Olympic Gold medallist passionately plays tennis and inspires others by example.

Do you think Serena will win a Grand Slam this year?

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Purav Joshi

662 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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