When I adopted Belinda, my hanoverian mare, she was well into her teens. I was adopting, essentially, a middle aged horse, one who had experienced half her life with people I knew I’d probably never meet.

But I could feel their influences through her from time to time.

Luckily I have a great relationship with Belinda’s past owner, so I do know a lot about her. I knew she was bought in Germany and brought to South Florida to be a broodmare. I knew she had two pretty babies that have gone on to have successful dressage careers.

I know all about her lineage and breeding history, thanks to her various paperwork.

I knew that Belinda was started under saddle with a dressage foundation, and was ridden by a dressage trainer early in her career. I knew she had shown First Level dressage and could school upper level movements. I knew she had jumped low level hunter courses.

I even knew some of the women who worked with Belinda’s previous owner, and who had sat on Belinda’s back and cared for before I even knew the big black mare existed.

But I didn’t know Laura.

A woman named Laura had seen a Horse Junkies United blog pop up in her various news feeds and clicked on the link because she recognized the black mare with the big star and snip in the photo. As she read my blog, she realized she too had known my mare.

It took weeks for me to realize there was a comment left on the post, but when I did find it, I emailed her ASAP. It turns out Laura rode at Belinda’s past owner’s farm for some time, a few years before I’d meet my current horse. She schooled Belinda in dressage after she had given birth to her second and final foal.

Laura shared some beautiful photos of the two of them riding together. I was so delighted!

The next time I hopped in the saddle I wondered how Belinda remembers her. If it was Laura who taught her to be so light through a leg yield, or how to do her flying lead changes.

It’s a really amazing moment to realize that the horse you love so much had touched so many others before she found you.