On a warm summer day in 1968, when I was seven years old, I witnessed my parents fighting. Moments later, I watched in horror as my father threw my mother out of the house, leaving me with him. I was left at the mercy of a man that had become ruthless, mean, aggressive and abusive. He made the rules and his rules were the law and he wanted them followed to the letter-no matter the cost. Later that night, my mother returned in hopes of taking me with her, only to have a gun shoved in her face and forced to leave again-changing my life forever. With the trust and love of a horse, ten years later, I learned to love again.