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Serena Williams: "I almost Died After Giving Birth to My Daughter"

“I almost died after giving birth to my daughter, Olympia,” Writes Serena Williams in recently published article on CNN. “Yet I consider myself fortunate.”

Williams tells her harrowing tale down to the gory details of her c-section wound breaking open due to coughing, and a swollen blod clot (hematova) being discovered in her abdomen.

“I am so grateful I had access to such an incredible medical team of doctors and nurses at a hospital with state-of-the-art equipment,” Williams wrote. “They knew exactly how to handle this complicated turn of events. If it weren't for their professional care, I wouldn't be here today.”

While the 23-time major champion is thankful for her lot in life, she is also disturbed by the challenges that poor women of color face, but in the United States and other countries, and she wants to make a difference.

“According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, black women in the United States are over three times more likely to die from pregnancy or childbirth-related causes,” she wrote. “But this is not just a challenge in the United States. Around the world, thousands of women struggle to give birth in the poorest countries. When they have complications like mine, there are often no drugs, health facilities or doctors to save them. If they don't want to give birth at home, they have to travel great distances at the height of pregnancy. Before they even bring a new life into this world, the cards are already stacked against them.”

Williams encourages readers to donate to UNICEF to help the cause. “Every mother, everywhere, regardless of race or background deserves to have a healthy pregnancy and birth,” Williams wrote. “And you can help make this a reality.”

Williams returned to the tour after over a year away two weeks ago, and plans to appear at Madison Square Garden on World Tennis Day on March 5th. She is also scheduled to make her return to the tour at the BNP Paribas Open, which takes place from March 5-18.