SHARE THIS ARTICLE

DROP A HINT

INVITE AN ATHLETE

SEND AN INVITATION

Home Sessions Feed Podcast Membership Join our Team Shop Join Affiliate Program Advocate Program Sign up

JOIN OUR COMMUNITY

Join Us

Start for free or explore plans.

Home Sign up Team plans Membership Get Quote Podcast Join the VIS Team Join Affiliate Program

JOIN OUR COMMUNITY

Join Us

Start for free or explore plans.

Back to Tune In

Episode #55

Boundaries & Identity

with Lydia Williams

21 Sep, 2021 · Soccer

Lydia Williams, goalkeeper for both Arsenal & the Australia Women's National Soccer Team shares her personal experiences & gives us advice on family dynamics, cultural disparities, empowerment, & overcoming obstacles.

Transcript

Stef

Welcome to the Voice In Sport Podcast, Lydia. I'm so excited to have you. 

Lydia

Thank you for having me. 

Stef

It's exciting to have somebody from Australia, but you're also over playing in Europe for Arsenal, so you are a world traveler, and your background is incredible. You come from a father whose Aboriginal in Australia and an American mom who were both missionaries. You had this incredible experience growing up that has shaped you into who you are. Today we're going to dive into that whole journey that you had growing up in Australia and how you ended up in Arsenal. 

To start, let's talk about all the way back to when you were born in Australia: where were you born? What was your full name? And explain to us, sort of, that initial first years growing up in Australia.

Lydia

Well, I was born in Katanning, which is a really small country-town in Australia in the West. I only lived there until I was like 16 months old, and then we moved to my hometown, which is Kalgoorlie, still in the West. My full name at birth was Lydia, or is Lydia Grace Yukari Williams. Grace was actually picked out by both my parents. My dad being indigenous, he actually wasn't born in a hospital. So basically, most aboriginals have to prove that they existed before 1950. He didn't have a birth certificate; he was born on the side of the Lake; he was delivered by his grandma with his mom. So, it's like a homage to her and her strength and she raised him when he was younger. And then Yukari was given to my tribal name that I'm known as "out in the bush", and then my mom, she came in somewhere from America flying over and decided to live in Australia.

Stef

I want to kind of start though, how does a girl in the middle of Australia- in a very small town with two parents that didn't have a ton of infrastructure for the soccer community- how did you get to Arsenal? You're a professional soccer player. Bring us back to those early years growing up in Kalgoorlie, how did you get into soccer? What did that look like for you? 

Lydia

Well, for me, it was, old country towns in Australia, you play every sport under the sun. Every weekend, there's sporting competition. The Sundays and Saturdays are dedicated to parents taking the children out to play whatever sport it is, and I grew up playing everything. Whatever I can get my hands on and with a team, that was kind of like my jam. So I ended up playing basketball, soccer, and athletics.

The first ball I actually kicked was an AFL ball, which is our native sport in Australia , so I ended up playing that and that's basically how my love of soccer grew and being out and playing with the team. And finally, once I got a little bit older I could join teams. There was an AFL team, so soccer was the next best thing for me. 

Stef

For those that are deeper. So, were you always a goalkeeper or did you start on the field and when did, when did you find sort of like your position? 

Lydia

I guess the most simple thing and comparison to AFL is being a goalkeeper- I could kick and catch with my hands. I couldn't do that anywhere else on the field. I actually started as a midfielder because I liked running around, and it wasn't until our family moved to Canberra, when I was 11, that I actually had to decide to be on a competitive team. The only position left in the division that I wanted to be in was a goalkeeper, and I was like, oh yeah we'll rotate. It'll be fine. Never rotated, so I just ended up being a goalkeeper for however long. 

Stef 

Well, let's talk about that move at 11 years old. How did that impact you going from Kalgoorlie to Canberra? And can you describe, for those of us that don't know Australia as well, the difference between the two cities.

Lydia

Well, I guess Kalgoorlie is a desert. There's red dust everywhere. It's the gold mining capital of Australia. It's very transitional people come into mind for two weeks and then they're gone. Everyone knows everyone's business, and I grew up, walking around with bare feet, going out in the bush. There are kangaroos hopping around everywhere. There wasn't much green grass or anything like that. 

And then Canberra is on the opposite side of Australia and it's, I guess like Washington, DC. It's a Nation's Capitol, so it's like public servants, private schools, and I was lucky enough to be able to go to a private school where I had to wear a uniform and shoes and learn how to be a little bit more sophisticated, basically. For me, it was such a culture shock, from being laid back in a country-town. I guess it was a town of 30,000 and then I went to Canberra, which was 400,000, and for me that was massive. And I was just overwhelmed. It took, I think my mom said, about seven months of me coming home from school every day to stop crying and actually say I have friends. So yeah, it was crazy. 

Stef

We all go through transitions from one city to the next, but that's a pretty big shift for you, and it was when you were 11, so it's a pretty formative time, like that's actually a big time. You start to develop, your body starts to develop. You start to really find yourself, your voice- it's an important time. So tell us a little bit about that transition in terms of what it meant for you for sport. Did you find yourself more motivated in sport? Was sport your outlet? What did it do for you? 

Lydia

I think my mum and dad were actually pretty switched on and they knew that I didn't know anyone. It was a move across the country. It wasn't a move to a different school or a different suburb, it was literally, you're going from one side of Australia to the other.

So for me, they were like, you join a school and we're going to enroll you in some sporting teams. That's the best way to meet someone, meet friends, enjoy yourself and kind of have that outlet outside of school when things aren't going right. And they knew I was obviously sport crazy.

So for me, I joined about three different teams. I think it was soccer, basketball, athletics, and then futsol. For me, it was my week nights and then weekends were so full and I got to meet so many different people, and that actually, I think helped me settle and enjoy the move a lot. The move was the best thing for me now that I look back at it. 

Stef

I also think that's what's so unique about your story, and it's pretty common, you didn't actually decide on what sport you were even going to really pursue until it sounds like middle school or high school. So, sometimes as young girls, we would look up to professional athletes like you and these top teams and we think, Oh, they must have been so hardcore. When was that moment of transition for you where you were like, all right, it's not futsol, it's soccer and I'm a goalkeeper, and I'm going to go hard for them. 

Lydia

Well, for me, I was too short for basketball, but I'm five, nine. I was a point guard, but I wasn't as quick and nimble and my shots weren't as accurate. Obviously I wasn't putting as much time in as I was playing soccer. Basketball was fun, but you get fouled too easily. You get out of the game and I just didn't really enjoy it. So, playing an hour and a half, two hours outside with your friends and enjoying oranges at half time or like a sausage sizzle afterwards or something like that, that was more appealing to me.

I've always been pretty daring in terms of playing outside. So hitting the ground and diving and jumping, that kind of suited me. I never was like, oh my nails, or like, it's going to hit me in the face. So I didn't mind being a goalkeeper, it just kind of fit me. I actually was a pretty shy kid when I was younger, so I think the role of a goalkeeper actually taught me how to be a lot more comfortable with myself and more outspoken and comfortable with who I am and who I was going to grow to be. So I think that actually it's been the best position for me. 

Stef

A lot of young girls struggle with confidence at that early age and so, was there a moment for you where you were like, I know I can make this and I'm going to make it a goal and go for it. Or did you find yourself always struggling with different confidence values if you will?

Lydia

For me, it's been a bit crazy, like I've been very naive about the journey through soccer. It's probably because as I was getting into it, it started growing more and more. So, I kind of rode the wave of popularity and more funding and everything like that, but also I was at a time where nobody had heard of us still. So I was just a kid that came from the desert to the Nation's Capital, that was a goalkeeper and doing really well.

I actually didn't make my first team, which was an under 20 Australian team, but on the back of that, when I was 16, then I got called into a national team camp and actually got my first national team cap when I was 17. So for me it was kind of like, Oh yeah, I get to go on a tour to China, this is kind of cool. And it's actually been harder to have that kind of ebbs and waves of confidence whilst I've been a professional rather than before I was a professional. 

Stef

I actually love that you shared that, because since then, to have made the team as of July, 2020, you have made 88 international appearances. So it just goes to show you that, you might not make a team at one point, but you can still make it. And I think that's such an important lesson for girls out there. Cause I think you, sometimes have those confidence hits and then it takes you so far down, so low that you're like, I can't get back up. So how did you get back up when you weren't making those teams? What motivated you to keep going?

Lydia

I think the most motivating factor is that I just loved playing with my friends whenever there was recess or break at lunchtime or after school. So for me that didn't really damper my confidence at all- I think it kind of made me more motivated to be like, Oh, that was cool. I didn't make it. But I was such a young player to see these girls at that stage actually trying to make a profession out of it. Once we actually got to our national league and I was playing when I was 15, seeing actual national team players who were 25 at that stage, and I was like, wow, they do this for a full-time living and they're traveling the world and they've gone to a world cup. And I think that's when it started to hit me.

Around the 2000 Mark, when we had the Olympics in Australia and I got to watch a few games and I was like, Whoa, there's Swedish people here and Nigerians here, and like, they're playing for the country and they came all the way here, so that was like pretty eye-opening for me. 

Stef

One of the things we're pushing for at Voice In Sport is more visibility to women's sports, because it can have such a big impact seeing one game on TV or having one live event- it's huge. So who were your role models growing up?

Lydia

Well, my role models have always been my parents. Both of them have had really, I guess, tough upbringings in different ways. So for me, just how they battled through that individually and then came through together as a partnership, I think has always motivated me and made me really strong. I've had to kind of be pretty independent and strong from a young age, so that's definitely helped me. They've always been proud and they've always allowed me to do things and learn from my mistakes.

But a sporting hero is Cathy Freeman. I think every Australian athlete, and female athlete, remembers that day in 2000 where she ran the 400 meters, had the whole country on her back and she won it, and that was just incredible for me. 

Stef

That's such a special moment, and I love that you bring up your parents because I want to talk a little bit about that impact that they've had on you. So your father was an indigenous tribal elder, and your mother was American and they were both missionaries. That's what brought you originally out to the desert and then back to Canterbury, but talk to us a little bit about how that shaped you as a person, growing up with two cultures- two very different cultures- kind of mashed together.

Lydia

Well, for them, my dad being dark skinned and my mom being light skinned, that was already difficult. Both of them faced racism and that was difficult. I never felt that- they did a really great job of, I guess, shielding me from that kind of pressure from the outside world.

Once I got a little bit older, then I got to see comments being thrown my way, or just in general, if I'd walk down the street with my dad and I am lighter skin than him, so it would be like, Oh, that's your daughter or whose child is that that you're with. Or when we go to sports events and he'd be there cheering on the sidelines, cause he was so proud of me. He never had a father growing up. So for me, I was the Apple of his eye. He'd make banners, he'd make his own songs and join the rest of the team's parents and he was the only black man. So they loved him. Once you met him, he could sell ice to Eskimos, but from the outward appearance, I think people judged him pretty quickly. 

The amount of times he just said, Oh no, it's all right. They just don't understand, or we, when we went and got food and he got short changed and he had to explain to me why he got short changed and my mum didn't. Learning that from a young age, it kind of made it more real, but he never made it a big issue. He never went to someone with malice and he never raised his voice or got angry or heated with them. He just wanted to love them and learn more about people and why they were hurting and taking it out on him or anything like that. So, I mean, he would take our last $20 and give it to someone who was sick on the side of the road rather than buy us food. So that's the kind of person he was. 

Then my mom just I guess brought us all together. She was a school teacher and then went to New York City and was a stockbroker on Wall Street, so she had an education and everything and she just decided to give it all up and come be a missionary in Australia. So for me with her, she's always taught me to have an education, work really hard but also, to follow your dreams and you can have the flexibility for that.

She kept us grounded where my dad would walk about basically, and then she made sure that we were on the right path. So for me, that's kind of like how I've grown up and been able to, I guess, get through all the difficulties that life's thrown my way.

Stef

Having that experience and racism, so up front and close to you with your father and your mother, how did that affect you, at such a young age, seeing that and how has that shaped you today as you move throughout the...

Lydia:

I think from a young age, I just didn't understand it. I think both my parents never saw color. It was just the person. They went to prisons to help people and be kind to them and minister them. I know my dad used to go to- Kalgoorlie has a lot of brothels- and he used to go there and give people Coke and food, just to make sure that they weren't alone. He'd pick roses from our garden, and if someone was just standing on the side of the road, he'd give them a Rose. So for me, they show kindness everywhere they go. It didn't matter who the person was, their background, their education, what they look like, their past. So for me, that's how I was raised and I've never really, growing up, let that kind of affect comments that people would throw my way . I'm so proud of my parents and my family and how I grew up that it's not a negative thing that I'm cross cultural now. But back in the day, I didn't really know what to say. I didn't know if I said if I was black or white or mixed and how that was taken.

I think sports were the outlet for me to express myself without being judged. So that was the most important thing for me is that sports actually allowed me to have that platform and just perform and have fun rather than what I looked like. 

Stef

For girls who might be facing discrimination today on their teams, whether that is race or identity or sexual orientation, what advice do you have for them if they're feeling like they don't belong? 

Lydia

I think it's important to remember to have that pride in yourself of how you were raised or the people that you trust the most, it, their voices matter. It doesn't matter about someone that you may have just met or a parent that a friend's parent or something like that. I think it's the voices you choose to listen to that are the most important thing. And they can build you out of any low self-confidence or self-esteem. Anything that builds you up, you need to nurture that any talent you have or anything that you are good at, you need to nurture that because that part of you is unique and that actually builds confidence into the places that you might need help.

Stef

I'm curious to know if you ever felt like you had a conflict of who you were growing up with two different cultures and traveling quite honestly, and being in such different areas of the country, which is pretty drastic change from the two places you grew up. How did you deal with that internal dialogue? Did you talk to your parents? What do you think about your identity today? 

Lydia

It was definitely hard. I got called half-cast a lot back because I had a black parent and a white parent, and for me that hurt a lot because it kind of solidified that I didn't belong to either side. But then when I'd go back home and my parents would explain, and then it was okay, now I'm actually in a safe spot and I can actually be comfortable in who I am.

But growing up in, then Canberra, when I was kind of at that formidable age of like hormones were starting, meeting new people, trying to fit in and that kind of thing, it was also an identity crisis because we were no longer with my dad's family, so it was only him and it was only my mum. So there wasn't any support for them. Whenever they were walking down the street, or whenever they faced difficulty, they were kind of starting like me- they were trying to make new friends and starting on their new road, so we were all kind of, I guess, on this journey together.

It honestly wasn't until my dad passed away when I was 15, when I had to stop talking about him and his characteristics and being a black person and kind of facing the things that he did that I actually started to realize like what he went through and how he shielded me and the strength that he had through that.

And once that happened, then I became a lot prouder of who I am and what my past is and what my parents have told me and who they've become and I've become through them. So I think through that tragedy, I kind of finally got my identity. 

Stef

Often girls, they might not be facing as many challenges of their identity in terms of their race, but sometimes they're facing the challenge of the identity of, are they an athlete or what else am I beyond being an athlete? And I think that's a real struggle, especially when you transition from one thing to the next or you decide to stop playing all of a sudden you're like, wait a minute. Who, who am I beyond a soccer player? So what advice would you give to girls that are currently sort of in that state of feeling like their entire identity is wrapped up in sport? How did you, and how have you sort of created this identity? 

Lydia

I think it's the people you meet. You're going to meet so many different people that have different interests and that's great. I think if you're open to yourself to get to know them, their family, what they like and dislike, I think that's when you start to create new, I guess, likes and habits and things that maybe life doesn't revolve around one thing. I've always loved meeting new people. So for me, playing sports has allowed me to meet new people, to travel the world and see different cultures. That's probably the overriding factor is that this has given me such a blessing and support and opened so many doors for me, but you have to be open to that experience.

Stef

You're an indigenous person from Australia, you have made it to the top level in sport as a female athlete, which is incredible. Do you ever feel a sense of obligation to speak up and advocate for indigenous people because of your success? How do you look at that? Is it an opportunity or do you look at it as an obligation? How do you deal with that back and forth?

Lydia 

I think the thing that I've learnt over the years is that nobody's feelings are wrong. Everyone has their own feelings and what they feel in that moment, it can't be wrong for them. So for me, I'm never gonna speak on behalf of someone else because I don't actually know what they're feeling unless they tell me. It has to be a, give or take, back and forth of being willing to listen and allowing yourself to learn about that. I'm an expert in my own life so I can speak freely about it whereas some of the Black Lives Matter things and I guess indigenous things that are happening in Australia- I'm not as educated because I'm not home- so I'm going to ask someone else actually have a conversation with them so I understand more before I speak out. I think that's really important that everyone, if you just speak out, there's going to be conflict for sure. But if you ask questions and actually , humble yourself to that person's feelings and knowledge, then I think that's when you can have these conversations and give your own opinions because you've actually allowed yourself time and space to understand.

Stef

Education, learning, it's a really big part of growing as a human, right. Not just on the field performance, but also just like being part of the world and learning. So I think it's so important, and what's amazing about your upbringing is that you sort of had two cultures right in front of your face the whole time that you were just like, wow, okay. There's more than one way. And I think that actually helps develop amazing people. I mean, because you automatically see the world from two different angles and that can sometimes be hard to do when you're in your own world, so I think it's a really powerful place to be. That has led you, a little bit, to some of the things you've done off the field, which is writing a book. And I want to talk about the children's book. I love the name, it's called "Saved", and I know you're working on a second book called "Goal" which seems very fitting. So what was your inspiration for this first book? 

Lydia

Well, basically I think my life is pretty crazy, how I grew up was really unique and, kind of unbelievable really, and it was kind of by chance. My agent was talking to a publishing company and he was just talking about his clients and mentioned my story and they were like, Whoa, that's a children's book. We've always thought that I needed to tell my story in a creative way, but there was nowhere in that space where we were thinking of a children's book. So for me, it kind of opened my eyes that I've been so much in the sporting world and marketing and media that seeing a publishing point of view and an author point of view, everyone, is so unique in how they see things. So yeah, they were like, can you write a children's book of your story? And that was basically it. It was just dumb luck, but it's the most exciting thing I think I've done.

Stef

What is the main message of your book?

Lydia

The main message of "Saved" is just to go have fun with your friends, that it doesn't matter what you do in life, as long as you enjoy it. Whatever that might be if that's enjoying time with loved ones, if that's your work, if that's sport. It's just going out there and giving it a go even if you feel low, as long as you find some enjoyment in it. It doesn't matter if you're the best, it's just go out and have fun and kind of let loose. 

Stef

Okay, this brings me to one of my favorite questions then. So how much do you think your success was built on luck and how much do you think your success was built on hard work?

Lydia

I would say there've been a lot of doors opened by luck, but there's no way I would have been able to go through those doors if it hadn't been for hard work. So I would say- gosh, that's hard then- I would say probably 30% is luck, but to actually go and, to get to a hundred percent, the hard work was 70, 75%.

Stef

So can you tell me a little bit about your next book? I know you're in the process of launching it. Tell me a little bit about what your main message will be for "Goal".

Lydia

Well, "Goal" is basically, again, based on my crazy life. I used to work at a zoo and I have a zoo-keeping degree, so it features all different animals, which is representative of different cultures and different people from different countries. So basically "Saved" is little Lydia going on an adventure now of meeting all these people and them actually contributing their knowledge and their skills to help her become a better person and a better player. 

Stef

Let's talk about how you got to your pro life. You're at Arsenal- you're in the European league, which is really incredible. You've also been part of the Australian Women's National Team, you've played both for Melbourne City, Canberra United, for Houston Dash. You've been in a lot of places on a lot of teams across a ton of cultures. So tell us about how you actually got to that top level and made it to those teams. Like what qualities should girls be thinking about when they're thinking about how I can get to that level? So how did you get there? 

Lydia

Actually, the first time I had a goalkeeper coach, I was training at the National Facility back in the day, and the national team used to have camps there. I wasn't a part of it, but the coach at the time saw how I was progressing, just because we train kind of at the same time that camp was on, so he saw that there was an improvement in me in about four months, five months. And that's when he invited me into my first camp and ultimately to my first cap. So that was kind of crazy. That was a door that had opened, and through me not noticing and me being naive and just going out there and training the hardest I could, it actually led me to representing Australia for the first time.

And then through that, it was, again, I think it was back when it was the WPS, the first season, and I actually got an opportunity to go to Chicago and be with the red stars in 2009. My mum being American, thank you, I was able to be an American citizen. I wasn't an international spot, so I got to just go over and kind of be like a fresh face. I never played, but it was probably the most rewarding experience, cause I got to be with Olympic Medalist World Cup winners. It was the best league in the world, and everyone was in it, that was anyone in women's futbol, so that was like a really big experience, and it kind of opened me up to like, wow, this is professional. This is what it needs to be like. 

Then from there, I got an opportunity to go to Sweden and play there for two years. That was kind of my first real big move away from Australia, so I was there for 10 months, for two years and actually did my ACL over there. So that was difficult. I had to learn how to be away from home and go through that rehab phase and everything. In the meantime, obviously I'd be flying in and out for the national team, so it was a pretty crazy ride since then. But it's, it's all been about being in one place and kind of putting all my effort into it and doors open through that. Then it's just, making sure that you are fit and healthy and right for the job. I think at the end of the day, as long as you believe in yourself, someone's going to believe in you so you have to have that mentality. If it's not where you want to be, there's somewhere that's meant to be for you.

Stef

What do you think are the top three qualities that helped you reach the top level?

Lydia

I'd say resilience is probably the biggest one. Fun- just being easy going- is probably the second one for me. And gosh, I'd probably just say being open to learning, being humble in the moment.

Stef

On your journey on all these teams, what has been the single biggest obstacle that you've had to overcome and how did you overcome it?

Lydia

It's probably been myself being hypercritical of myself. That is something that I am very much so, in training and in games, I am very hyper-critical if there's a mistake or what I can do better. But during that time, I've also learned how to let it go pretty easily. And for me that's been probably the most difficult thing to do, but it's been the most rewarding thing.

Soon as soccer is over for the day, I know how to relax, so I make sure I have a coffee, check on a Netflix show and then just completely forget about what's happened that day and I can move on pretty quickly. So that's probably the biggest thing.

Stef

It's hard to turn it off. I think a lot of girls are probably feeling the same way. Maybe they don't even know it, but they might be their own biggest obstacle. Thank you for sharing that because that's sometimes the hardest thing to admit. 

Lydia

Yeah. I'm not afraid to admit it, but I'm also happy to say that I'm a pretty good chillaxer.

Stef

Amazing. It's important to have those moments where you take a step back and you take care of yourself. I want to talk a little bit about your experience across all these different leagues, especially right now, in a time where Black Lives Matter and social justice movements are really starting to pick up in I think a really positive direction because more people are talking about it. More people are educating themselves and more leagues, quite frankly, are understanding that they need to make some changes to be more inclusive. So as you have experienced all these different leagues, I'm sure the stats on the number of Aboriginal athletes, part of these leagues and part of the national teams in Australia. But when you look at the global scale and you look at soccer players and the number of black soccer players across these leagues for women, especially in the United States, it's pretty low. The numbers are pretty low. So how do you think we can create a more inclusive environment in soccer in the future? 

Lydia

Oh, I think it's about having education again in those places, just to see the diversity through that. I know Australia is now trying to put together an indigenous program to go out to communities and everything. For me, if we didn't move to Canberra, I would have never had that opportunity to play for my national team. But I think it just takes one person to believe in that player or that program that's gonna open doors. I think that's the most important thing, that you kind of have to stick your neck out there at the moment to create a movement or to do something that's worthwhile and valuable in the world. It just takes one person to be brave, and that's, I think, what we're waiting for.

Stef

What would be one message you would hope to inspire the next generation of young indigenous players? 

Lydia 

My message is probably just to go out there and have fun and believe in yourself, believe in your talents as a person, firstly, and then your talent as a sporting person, secondly, and I think that's just going to carry you and give you confidence. 

Stef

I'd love to wrap it up with our two questions. We ask all female athletes: what is one single piece of advice you would tell a younger girl in sport today that does not see herself reflected in her sport? 

Lydia

I would say, to that young girl, just be confident. Enjoy the moment, and just make sure you listen to the people that actually make you happy.

Stef

Those that might run into you and face that are discriminating or being racist about your background, your identity, or your race, what would you say to those girls that are facing that today? 

Lydia

I would say, let's sit down and have a conversation. If you are so hell bent on judging me, let's actually have a conversation, and I'll talk to you about what I've been through, or my life, and then you can make your decision out of that. 

Stef

We're all trying to drive change within the sports industry for women. What is the one thing that you would like to see changed for the future of women's sports? 

Lydia

Probably one thing that I would like to see keep going, rather than change, is the momentum. I think over the last 4 years there has been such a momentum shift with prize money and equal rights and equal pay, and that kind of thing, and I think that momentum needs to keep going as strong as it has. So I have all the faith that, hopefully, that can continue. 

Stef

I agree. I love it. Momentum is so important, we've got to keep it going. So, thank you so much, Lydia, for joining us. It was a pleasure to speak with you and I'm so excited to see what you're going to do next. 

Lydia 

Thank you so much.

(background music starts)

Stef

(background music stops)

Host: Stef Strack

Producer: VIS Creators™ Danielle Soto, Anya Miller & Shianne Knight

Lydia Williams, goalkeeper for both Arsenal & the Australia Women's National Soccer Team shares her personal experiences & gives us advice on family dynamics, cultural disparities, empowerment, & overcoming obstacles.