Serena Williams and meghan recount challenges they faced as working moms in the Duchess of Sussex’s first podcast, including stories of how they found themselves having to work with their children shortly after scary incidents.
Williams, a 23-timer Grand Slam Champion, who recently said “the countdown has begun” to her retirement, told Meghan’s “archetypesSpotify podcast on Tuesday that she was playing a match at the 2018 French Open after a nearly sleepless night after her daughter Olympia broke her wrist.
“I somehow managed to win but I was so emotionally drained and just as emotionally drained that it was crazy. And, you know, and then, like every night after, I was with her the whole time and it was like you were with me,” said Williams, who has hinted her final tournament will be the US Open, the next start week in New York.
The tennis star and Meghan, who are friends, spoke at length about the challenges of balancing high-profile careers in the public eye and motherhood in Tuesday’s episode.
“So when you played that match the next morning, nobody knew what your night had been like the night before. They forgot that human part of it,” Meghan said of Williams’ French Open experience.
Meghan opened up about an incident while touring South Africa with her husband. Prince Harry, and her son Archie, in which a fire broke out in her son’s room and the two had to leave their baby to continue their official duties. Archie was supposed to be napping in the room at this time, but his nanny had taken him over to eat. The incident shocked everyone, Meghan said.
She said she wanted to spend time with her son but she and Harry had to go on another official date.
“The focus is on how it looks rather than how it feels,” Meghan said. “And part of humanizing and breaking through those labels and those archetypes and those boxes that we’re put into is having some understanding of the behind-the-scenes human moments that people might not be aware of, and to give each other interruption.
“Because we did — we had to leave our baby behind,” she said.
Williams, who turns 41 next month, and Meghan spoke about the tennis star’s recent announcement that he is retiring from tennis. Williams said she discussed it with Prince Harry before announcing her decision publicly.
“Obviously, I’m retiring professionally, but it’s also an evolution. I’m doing more business things. And I really want to expand my family. And, you know, I’ve put it off for so long. And as a woman, there’s only so long as you can put that off,” Williams said.
Harry and Meghan have a multi-year deal to produce and host podcasts for Spotify
Harry and Meghan have a multi-year deal to produce and host podcasts for Spotify under their production company Archewell Audio. Meghan said the Archetypes podcast will focus on harmful labels and stereotypes applied to women.
The Spotify deal is one of several high-profile deals the couple have struck, including one with Netflix. Harry and Meghan stepped down from their royal duties in March 2020 over what they described as encroachments and racist attitudes towards the Duchess by the British media. They have since moved to California where they are raising their children Archie and Lili.