“It’s official. My comeback is here,” Serena Williams proclaimed on her Instagram account regarding her return to tennis. It’s true, the G.O.A.T. is returning to tennis on Thursday for the Indian Wells Masters tournament in Serena’s home state of California.

Serena last competed in January 2017, when she won the Australian Open while approximately two months pregnant. Following the birth of her daughter, the 36-year-old superstar took several months off to recover from the difficulties she had during her pregnancy. Serena later revealed that she “almost died” giving birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia.

In an open letter, Williams describes how Olympia was an emergency C-section and Williams’ heart rate dropped considerably during the process. For the next six weeks after giving birth, Serena was bedridden as she recovered from her pregnancy difficulties. Following “a slew of heart complications” like swollen blood clots, and surgery to remove a hematoma, Williams still wanted to return for 2018 Australian Open, 3 months after she gave birth. She ultimately decided to withdraw from the competition, but she is now a guarantee for Thursday’s events.

“My comeback could not have come on a better day,” Williams said on her Instagram post. Indeed, on the same day as the return of one of the greatest athletes of all time, it is also International Women’s Day — a day where women are celebrated for social, economic, political and cultural achievements. As one of the most decorated athletes of all time with 23 grand slam titles, a world record, Serena has definitely proven to be a woman worthy of praise for International Women’s Day.

The mommy of six months will be competing in tournaments throughout March in both California and Florida. In the Round of 128 of the Indian Wells competition, Serena will go up against 24-year-old Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan.

 

It's official. My comeback is here. This Thursday I will start playing tennis again professionally for the first time since giving birth to my daughter. This whole month I am playing tournaments in California and Florida- both my home states. Thursday, the day I play my very first match, marks international women's day. My comeback could not have come on a better day and I decided I wanted to do something different let you all be apart of my long journey back (if you want of course!!) So I created my Serena Gold toned "S" pin. When I am playing you can wear it and show support not only from me but also for my charity which supports the Yetunde Price Resource center. I want this gold "S" mean something special to you personally. What is one S word in your life that means something to you? Mine is Strong and Sure! So when I wear my "S" pin I am representing Strength, and Sureness. What would your "S" mean? They are for now only available for my fans that come see my at Indian wells, and Miami starting Wednesday as well as Thursday when I play!! Sooooo if you are watching me stop by the Serena booth to grab a "S" pin. Post pics of you wearing your "S" and tag me! Thanks for the support I look forward to seeing you out there!!

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