Serena Williams and friend Meghan Markle can both attest that weddings don’t always go as planned.
In the third episode of her HBO documentary series Being Serena, which aired Wednesday, Williams admitted that her father backed out of her wedding to Alexis Ohanian just one hour before the ceremony was scheduled to start.
"He was in New Orleans, he had a suit, and I know he was really excited,” Serena revealed in the episode. "But then he wrote me and said: Serena, I don’t want you to be mad at me, but I just can’t walk you down the aisle. I’m not myself anymore. I’m just too nervous."
Williams admits her response was not typical. "Daddy, it’s okay, if you don’t want to come to the wedding at all, that’s okay too. I’m not going to be upset with you about it, so I don’t want you to be upset about it,” she wrote back to her father. "Maybe a lot of daughters wouldn’t react the same way, but I know the struggles he’s had these last few years,” she explains. “His health is better now, but I know he still doesn’t feel like himself, doesn’t feel like he’s perfect. And if he doesn’t want to be up there in front of a lot of people, I completely understand.”
And so, the 36-year-old athlete walked herself down the aisle to a violin version of How Far I’ll Go from movie Moana.
Her good friend Meghan Markle is going through a similar situation. Markle, who is set to walk down the aisle to Prince Harry on Saturday, confirmed that her father will be absent during the big day.
A statement from Ms. Meghan Markle: pic.twitter.com/TjBNarmuBU— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) May 17, 2018
“Sadly, my father will not be attending our wedding. I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health,” she wrote in a statement from Kensington Palace, shared via Twitter. Thomas Markle suffered a heart attack just last week, and is currently hospitalized in California after undergoing surgery. “I would like to thank everyone who has offered generous messages of support. Please know how much Harry and I look forward to sharing our special day with you on Saturday,” the future royal concluded.
Williams, who first met and befriended Markle in 2014, is expected to be in London for the royal wedding this Saturday.Being SerenaMeghan MarklePrince HarryRoyal WeddingRoyalsSerena Williams