Serena Williams Couldn't Be More Proud of Her 'Wild Child' Daughter
In an exclusive interview with Parents.com, the tennis superstar, who recently partnered with Pampers, shares why a little one's "wild" streak is something to celebrate.
April 3, 2019
It should come as no surprise that elite athlete Serena Williams' 19-month-old daughter Alexis Olympia is an active, curious little girl. Some might even call her a "wild child," an expression that has had a negative connotation, bringing to mind little ones who are rambunctious and challenging to parent. But Williams sees the phrase as a compliment, partnering with Pampers to redefine "wild child" with the launch their new Cruisers 360 FIT diapers, which were specifically designed for active babies and are meant to adapt to every wild move a baby makes.
"I think [wild] is great, I think it's exciting," Williams tells Parents.com. "I love the use of that word, because it's active, it's learning. There's so much more to it. ... I've learned that 75% of parents believe that society sees a wild child as a bad thing, but wild is actually a good thing. It means curious, spirited, growing."
These are all traits that Williams and her husband Alexis Ohanian foster and find amusing. She explains that it's at night especially that her L.O. "has so much energy." So, post-dinner activities occasionally include a dance party. "I like to think of her food moving in her tummy, so we dance," Williams says. "Today, she was so happy because she's starting to recognize the music and the songs. She was sprinting across the room and jumped on the couch. She bumped her head on the chair and kept going. I mean, this kid is just being the wild child that she is. I love that about her, but it makes every single day exciting, and tiring, but I wouldn't trade it for anything."
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Though Alexis' energy may be attributed to her age, Williams explains that her daughter has always been curious and spirited—even as a baby. "It's so funny," she says. "When she was born, even when she came out, she was looking at everything. She had such a strong neck [even when she was] so young. She's just as active now as she was mentally then. Mentally, she was looking everywhere, and she wanted to be a part of something, and she would stare at our face with such intent eyes."
Then, around 6 months ago, Williams says her little girl stared staring at her intently. "I have a mole on my face," she explains. "She grabbed my mole, and I joke about it all the time with husband. I'm like, 'She was looking at the mole since the day she was born, she wanted to grab it!' It's like, 'Honey, that's mommy's mole.' It hurts, but I feel like she's been looking at that mole...and now she's like, 'I finally got my hands on it.' She's always been super curious, and I'm not surprised that she's the kind of baby that runs and jumps on the couch even though she can't quite jump yet or runs and bumps into a chair."
Williams hopes her daughter will continue to be inquisitive as she grows up. "Hopefully, she'll always be curious and ask questions," she says. "I always feel like she should ask questions, everyone should ask questions, and that way, you can get them answered. Some people shy away from asking different things, and they don't get the same opportunities. They don't get the same answers. They don't get the same things that other people are able to have. I want her to always embrace that curiosity."
The international superstar says that when it comes to learning the ins and outs of raising Alexis or figuring out how to strike more work-life balance, she's always reading or chatting with other parents. "I always read articles in magazines," she says. "Sometimes, literally, I will tweet, like 'I can't do this,' or 'What's going on?' Or 'I need help with this,' just to see what other mothers and parents are saying. People have been doing it way longer than me, so I'm always getting tips from everyone else."
Admitting that she's learning just like every parent while sharing glimpses of her personal life has opened Williams up to critical remarks, which unfortunately, all moms, world famous or not, are subject to these days. Her best advice for moms contending with judgment? "You just have to continue to live your life and do your best," she says. "You can't let other people tell you what to do."
The fact that Williams is now rocking motherhood, serving as such a powerful, outspoken role model for other parents, comes as an obvious evolution for the tennis star. After all, well before Alexis was deemed a wild child, Williams' mom Oracene Price recognized her daughter's wild streak. Its that innate spiritedness that fueled her journey to becoming one of the most beloved and successful pro athletes in the world.
"I mean, I wouldn't be who am I if I wasn't very active," Williams says. "I wouldn't be who I am today if I wasn't ready to explore, and to move, and to just be myself."
Check out Serena Williams and her L.O. in their new spot for Pampers Cruisers 360 FIT diapers, a tribute to wild children everywhere.