First, I guess I should tell a little about me. I grew up in the city with a passion for horses that just would not go away. Birthday list, a pony/horse, Christmas list, a pony/horse. List ended. Every horse/pony I saw pulling the wagons with venders was the mighty Pegasus himself. Finally the day came my folks decided it was time to get me out of the city. We moved to the country on 9 acres. No excuses now, no more small back yard, plenty of room for my horse.

The wait was excruciatingly painful. Finally my dad bought a beautiful Pinto gelding, not fit for a know-nothing kid, SOLD. They bought yet another Pinto gelding, again unfit. Sold. I was sick, MY horse had to be out there somewhere. The day came my folks said we have two horses for you to look at BEFORE we buy. A registered dun QH gelding, then a grade QH gelding. My folks really could not afford the registered gelding, so got me to try the grade gelding first. It was LOVE! I decided to not even get on the other horse, his name was Buck. Who cared? This bay with the white circle on his neck was MINE all MINE! He needed a name, he was named Buck, so in a way I guess I did bring both home.

Buck was to teach me about life, love and the care of a horse, he taught me how to ride. Many a time, I would think I was ready for something that Buck knew I was not. Our life together was magical, to me anyway. Oh others saw a non-descriptive bay horse with a crooked blaze and a white circle on his neck, and that droopy bottom lip. I saw something totally different, a teacher, a friend, the dream come true.

Our life together was too short. One day I went up to feed the horses, yes more then one, the day after my dad bought that first Pinto, my uncle bought a little bay 9 month old colt. Not long afterwards came a horse for my dad and a welsh pony someone gave my dad. On this day, something was wrong with Buck. I ran down to the house in a panic. Mom promised to call the vet, the vet got there after I got home from school and my dad was home from work. I described what he was doing, vet said stroke. My dad flipped out, 10 year old horses do not have strokes. Vet looked at my dad kind of funny and said who told you he was 10? The guy we bought him from, vet said, well he lied. Buck turned out to be around 35.

Buck was put into semi-retirement. By this time I was riding Sparkey (that 9 month old colt my uncle bought). He grew up to be one fine riding horse. Buck was still my dream horse, my best pal. He just needed to rest more.

The day came I went up yet again to feed horses before school, and Buck was sick again. I ran down the house in a panic again. Mom said he would be fine, to go to school. I got home from school and went to check on Buck, he was down, HORROR! I screamed for my dad to come help. My dad came running to find me begging my dream horse to get up. My dad grabbed me away from Buck, threw me to my mom and said get her the hell out of here, this damn horse is dead! I drew back my fist and hit my dad, I even kicked him that day. All I heard was him cussing my horse, then saying he was dead! No he is not, just help him up. It was true, Buck left me.

He had taught me everything he could, then the most painful lesson of all, to grieve for him. There have been many horses in my life since Buck, but the dream horse was Buck. I loved each and every one of them, because Buck taught me how. Buck was there when my folks would fight, I could find peace with Buck. I could sit in his stall and feel safe, loved, protected.

I saw Buck not long after he passed, he was standing on the hill on the family farm. Oh some relatives thought I was nuts, so be it! I knew Buck came back to tell me he was OK and that I was going to be OK.

My sweet boy is still in my heart, I still love him, even after over 30 years, and that is OK, my dream horse will always be a part of me, a part of who I am today. Thank you Buck, my life with horses was yours to make or break, you made it wonderful.


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