Elisane Silva is 2,07 metres tall and has been dubbed “Brazil’s tallest woman”.
When Elisane, who is from Salinópolis in Brazil, was just 10 years old she was already 1,75m tall and knew there was “something not quite right” about her.
“I was the only one in my family and my class who was this tall,” Elisane told Daily Mail.
“My mother is only five-foot-four inches (1,6m) and my father is just five-foot-seven inches (1,7m), so it was a shock to our entire family when I was the tallest member at such a young age.”
Not only did the now-26-year-old continue growing, she also experienced severe growing pains.
“The pain in my bones was intense and I had a lot of pressure build-up in my head which I believe was due to the excessive rate I was growing,” she says.
Her concerned mom, Ana Maria Ramos, took her to hospital but they had to return home because they couldn’t afford the medical costs.
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Luckily, a national TV programme offered to pay for Elisane to have routine tests to help discover the cause of her rapid growth.
Doctors learnt she had a benign tumour on her pituitary gland, which caused the overproduction of her growth hormone.
“I was just glad to finally have an answer,” she says.
However, Elisane still had a tough time at school where she was often bullied because of her height.
“I remember locking myself up at home,” she says. “I felt so sick because of the hurtful comments and words.”
But after school things started looking up for her. She decided to use her height to her advantage and become a model and is now trying to build up her portfolio. “The photo sessions have helped my confidence enormously,” she says.
She’s also found love with Silva Carvalho – who is just 1,6 m tall – and they married in 2015. They are now parents to two-year-old Angelo.
“Silva was the first person to treat me like a human being and not some freak of nature. Although there’s an obvious height difference, we don't see it as an issue as we love each other just the way we are.”
Elisane, who is nearly as tall the world’s tallest woman, Sandra Allen (2,3m), now hopes her story will inspire others to love themselves for their differences.
“I have learnt to love myself for my unique height,” she says. “There’s no one quite like me and I think that's rather special.”
Sources: Daily Mail, Metro, Daily Star