The 36-year-old star - who gave birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia in September 2017 - returned to competitive action earlier this year, and despite losing in the women's singles final to Germany's Angelique Kerber in London on Saturday, Williams took the opportunity to reflect on her journey.
In a nerveless display of supreme shot-making and guile, Kerber repeated her 2016 Australian Open final triumph over Williams with a commanding 6-3 6-3 victory in Saturday's title showdown at The All England Club.
Serena Williams, after making it to the Wimbledon final almost a year after giving birth, suffered a terrible defeat, falling to rival Angelique Kerber! So she was as expert at this formality as she has proven expert in tennis itself over her remarkable career.
"I'm just me, that's all I can be", Williams said about playing as a mother. By the end of the first set she had hit 14 unforced errors to 11 winners, and only won 14% of points on her second serve.
Left-hander Kerber drew Williams into longer rallies that brought out errors. But it's weird, I set my schedule so I have time.
Graf was Kerber's hero when she was growing up in Bremen.
Yet, there she was, in the middle of the Centre Court, clad in white, fighting back bittersweet tears, telling the world that she has so much to look forward to, that she's "just getting started". "Honestly, I feel like if I can do it, they can do it", she said. Angelique Kerber has been on fire so far, and leads Serena after one set.
Serena Williams will be holding a trophy again soon-she's got the greatest one waiting at home for her. And Kerber also credits Graf with giving her the mental belief in 2015 that she could be a grand slam victor.
With her voice breaking after the match, which lasted one hour and five minutes, the gracious Williams said: 'It's been an unbelievable tournament for me, I was really happy to get this far. "Like I train in the morning and I spend the rest of the day with her, so I don't get to be with her the full day but a pretty good chunk out of the day".
She talked about playing freely now that her daughter is a priority.
"I'm still sure that we haven't seen the best Angie", said her coach, Wim Fissette.
She's been wearing compression leggings during her matches as a precaution and says she remains nervous.