[TW: Sexual Abuse] Germaine shares her transformative journey on Te Araroa trail, after contemplating this adventures for years. She opted to only walk the South Island section, as it represented everything she loved about hiking – mountains, vistas and isolation. Germaine faced physical challenges, including navigating treacherous terrain and unrelenting foot pain. Mentally, her toughest moments came when she confronted her unresolved emotions and trauma from past sexual abuse. Te Araroa offered her a sanctuary to process these feelings and the trail became a canvas for her healing journey, nature patiently waiting for her to emerge stronger and more resilient. Germaine’s advice for those wanting to walk Te Araroa is simple but powerful – make the decision, commit to it, and take the first step. Her story encapsulates the messy but beautiful experience of being human, and the power of overcoming challenges big and small.
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