In a vivid and revealing article published in Vanity Fair magazine, Serena Williams recounts the early days of how she met her fiancé, Alexis Ohanian, co-founder of Reddit. She talks the surprise of falling in love with a tall, 6’5 nerd, how they grew together, and the excitement of their pregnancy and upcoming marriage.
They met by chance in Rome, when he sat next to Serena and her entourage while they were staying at the same hotel. They didn’t want him there, so one told Alexis that they saw a rat by his table. His response intrigued Serena.
“I’m from Brooklyn. I see rats all the time.”
“Oh, you’re not afraid of rats?”
Which is when Serena suggested a compromise and invited Alexis to join them.
That was in 2015, and it didn’t take long for him to latch on to who and what he wanted.
Alexis knew then he wanted to marry her, not simply out of happiness or compatibility. She was helping him become the best version of himself because of her own work ethic and focus, with millions watching and the expectation of the public that she should win every time, what Serena herself described as carrying “three pyramids” on her shoulder. He thought he worked hard—it is part of the romance of high tech that everyone works 18 hours a day and then curls up under the desk for a few hours’ sleep with their laptop as teddy bear and pacifier—but he realized it was nothing compared with Serena.
I felt like a door had been opened to a person who made me want to be my best self. . . . I find myself just wanting to be better by simply being around her because of the standard she holds.
Looks like Alexis had been planning his proposal way before she became pregnant. “Alexis decided he would surprise Serena by proposing to her on December 10 in virtually the same spot he had first met her: the Cavalieri. It was an intricate and tactical plan, several months in the making.”
Congrats to the couple, but that wedding can’t come soon enough! Time for Serena to rep black women living and marrying well to the fathers of their kids.
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