My mother grew up with horses, but she doesn't often talk about her time riding. I know she rode with some really nasty girls and that sort of soured her on the whole experience. She kept her horses until she left for college but didn't continue riding in school or afterwords.
My dad's sister had horses at various times as they were growing up but my dad never got into them.
When my sister and I came around, it was clear we had gotten "the horse bug". We frequently asked for horses, horse themed birthday parties, riding lessons, anything we could to be around horses. This passion is the only thing in my life that my parents did not support me on. When I was young it was because we simply did not have the money, and when I got older it was because my mom was worried about me falling in with the kinds of girls she rode with. It wasn't until a random event in the middle of the lake lead my dad to feeling so guilty/ proud of me that my parents realized how badly I wanted a horse. And finally they agreed.
Several months of searching later my dad's long time friend from high school happened to be selling a horse. Looking back now, I'm not sure he was the horse we should have bought, but we did. He was a nine year old black quarter horse named Jasper who was broke to ride western. We bought him and changed his name to Gambit. He was calm which was good, but rather lazy, which was alright for a first horse. We bonded, but didn't really "click" for several months.
I found him a place at a western barn, that was beautiful and affordable. Unfortunately after a year and a half, we had to move because it was too far away from campus and I wasn't getting out to see him everyday. I moved to an English show barn hoping to get started in jumping and work my way over to eventing. This didn't happen.
About ten minutes into my first lesson Gambit pulled up lame in the front right leg/hoof. I'd been out the day before and he'd been fine so I was confused but I figured he'd be fine. I kept him on stall rest over the weekend but when Monday came he was though not noticeably worse, not better. I felt heat in his hoof and called the farrier. When I described it over the phone the farrier said it sounded like an abscess so we mad and appointment for him to come drain it. However when the farrier got there he revised his earlier diagnosis and said he wasn't sure what was wrong but he suggested x-rays. So I called a vet, and made an appointment.