An article about Serena Williams wearing a bodysuit for her French Open return turned my eyes to my own tennis outfit. Sometimes I wear shorts, sometimes a skirt (more precisely, a skort). A skirt? I can already see my old friends raising their eyebrows. Ever since I graduated from high school, where I had to wear my school’s uniform skirt, I’ve never bought a skirt for work or casual occasions. Then, I became hooked on tennis and bought my first tennis skirt. Looking at myself in it in the mirror, I liked the person in front of me. She looked professional, active and feminine—the whole package I wanted to have but couldn’t with a regular skirt.
In her book My beloved World, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote, “I am a woman; I do have a feminine side. Learning to enjoy it would not diminish any other part of me,” We shouldn’t be forced to choose between feeling good about how we look and doing our jobs well—whether it’s making history-making decisions or firing off some powerful forehands. We can have them all. We should.
Today, I wear my favorite pink Under Armour T-shirt and a tennis skirt. I may not look aggressive, but my shots are. Feminine qualities are not limited to “delicacy and prettiness.” They also include competency and competitiveness.
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