In her new memoir, soccer star Megan Rapinoe gushes about her new fiancee Sue Bird, who plays for the WNBA's Seattle Storm.

Rapinoe and Bird, who began dating in 2016, announced their engagement late last month.

(Related: Biden cheers Megan Rapinoe, Sue Bird engagement.)

In an excerpt from her just-out book One Life, Rapinoe discusses the start of her relationship with Bird. At the time, Rapinoe was in the headlines for kneeling during the National Anthem in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick, who was protesting police violence.

“While my career was at its lowest point, my personal life was flourishing,” Rapinoe wrote. “On the downside, I was stressed, angry, and generally bent out of shape, and I didn't make it easy for Sue.”

“She was amazing. Every time I flipped out and picked up my cell, either to fire off an ill-advised tweet or make an ill-advised phone call, she pulled me back. 'Take a minute,' she’d say, 'and see if it still seems like a good idea.'”

“One of the best parts about being with Sue during those weeks – besides falling madly in love – was that I got to piggyback on her schedule.”

“When Sue trained, I trained; what she ate – more vegetables, less sugar and carbs – I ate. I hadn’t been eating enough, which had impacted my ability to train and kept me hovering at 70 percent effort and engagement. Sue’s fitness and nutrition schedules not only gave me a sense of strength and stability that helped me power up to 100 percent; they also made Sue and I feel as if we were in this together.”

“At the beginning of the 2017 season, after six months on the new regimen, I was so fit and healthy my entire physique had changed. One look at me and it was blatantly obvious: I was stronger and leaner than before. I was mentally fit, too. By helping me with my diet and training, Sue wasn’t just giving me practical support. It was emotional, too, and during those weeks and months, I felt as if she were wrapping me up and taking care of me, nursing me back to health both physically and mentally. Sue doesn’t gush, or fuss, or make a big deal out of things, but the fact that she dived headfirst into this absolute dumpster fire of my life was an expression of such love, and tenderness, and strength all in one, that for the first time in my life, I allowed myself truly to melt into someone.”

Rapinoe also talks about Bird's decision in 2017 to publicly come out as lesbian.

“[W]hen it was clear we were firmly together, she scheduled an interview with ESPN,” she said.

In 2018, the couple talked to a reporter about “how it felt to be symbols to a lot of people, and Sue talked about coming out earlier in the year.”

Bird told the reporter that being out is not the same as being publicly out.

“'Being around Megan, I learned that. And then after I came out, just seeing the reactions, having people come up to me directly' – I was naturally outspoken; Sue was naturally reserved – but coming out publicly had struck us in exactly the same way, as a vital form of visibility. 'I think there’s just something really powerful about that.'”