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Serena Williams welcomes second child, a girl, with husband

"Welcome, Adira River Ohanian,” Alexis Ohanian tweeted Tuesday, sharing photos of their expanding family.
Serena Williams and Alexis Ohanian at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City
Serena Williams and Alexis Ohanian at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on May 1.Taylor Hill / Getty Images file

Tennis icon Serena Williams has welcomed her second child, a girl, her husband announced on social media.

"Welcome, Adira River Ohanian," Williams' husband, Alexis Ohanian, said Tuesday afternoon on X, formerly known as Twitter.

"I’m grateful to report our house is teaming with love: a happy & healthy newborn girl and happy & healthy mama. Feeling grateful," he added.

He praised Williams, 41, saying, "you've now given me another incomparable gift — you’re the GMOAT," meaning "Greatest mother of all time."

He shared photos of Williams beaming holding her newborn with Ohanian and their 5-year-old daughter, Olympia.

"Thanks to all the amazing medical staff who took care of my wife & our daughter I’ll never forget the moment I introduced @olympiaohanian to her baby sister," he wrote.

He concluded with a verse from the Book of Isaiah: “Your peace would have been like a river, your well-being like the waves of the sea.”

Williams announced in a Vogue essay last August that she was planning to retire from tennis and focus on growing her family. 

“I have never liked the word retirement,” Williams wrote. “Maybe the best word to describe what I’m up to is evolution.”

“These days, if I have to choose between building my tennis résumé and building my family, I choose the latter,” she added.

Williams was also vocal about her health challenges after she gave birth to Olympia in 2017. 

In an essay for Elle, she wrote that the day after she delivered Olympia by cesarean section, her legs were numb and she feared she was having a pulmonary embolism — a threatening blood clot in the lungs.

In the essay, she said that she learned in 2010 that she had blood clots in her lungs and that “ever since then, I’ve lived in fear of them returning. It wasn’t a one-off; I’m at high risk for blood clots.”

She alerted hospital staff members but said, “No one was really listening to what I was saying.” 

After much persistence, she wrote, a nurse called Williams’ doctor, who agreed to have things checked out, and she was found to have several blood clots and needed several operations. 

Williams noted that Black people in the U.S. are nearly three times likelier to die during or after childbirth than white people.

“Many of these deaths are considered by experts to be preventable,” Williams wrote. “Being heard and appropriately treated was the difference between life or death for me; I know those statistics would be different if the medical establishment listened to every Black woman’s experience.”