(PUEBLO, Colo.) — Four families across our state were recognized by the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) for their positive impact on our future. Kimberly Sosa belongs to one of these families, where her overflowing love is felt instantly.
Sosa was retiring out in California but a distinctive call from her daughter would make that all change.
“She told me that my grandson was sick, and he was in the hospital, he was on life support,” said Sosa. “I said, well, I’m going to have to go down there… I drove through the night. I left that day, me and my granddaughter, and I thought I was coming to bury my grandson.”
When she arrived at the hospital, she learned that her grandson’s brain had swelled, and he had a small chance of survival.
“I talked to him that night and I stayed with him,” Sosa said. “I said, ‘you’re going to be okay; you’re going to be okay, and the next day they did MRI, and the swelling went down. So, I ended up here in the hospital for about six weeks.”
When he woke up, he was blind and didn’t have any response–the family discovering that he had a rare metabolic disorder.
At the same time, Sosa’s daughter was struggling with addiction. Sosa knew she had to help her as well.
“You’re going to get clean and you’re going to get your kids back. I said, I’m going to take care of him, but you’re going to, you’re going to get him back,” said Sosa.
Sosa ended up selling her house in California and moving back to Pueblo. She took on the role of caring for her three grandchildren and ensuring there was a stable household while their mother was in treatment.
“It’s never easy, when a grandparent takes their grandchildren over, their whole life stops,” Sosa explained. “You’ve lived your life. I retired, I was in a great place, I bought my retirement home in California. I was living my dream, but when your grandchildren need you and you have to take them in. On top of that, you’re dealing with the other side of addiction, that’s difficult. That is hard, but you know love for your grandchildren, it’s endless.”
Now, Sosa helps her grandson walk throughout the house and work on his stability. She also encourages her granddaughter to draw and follow her passion in the arts. It is crystal clear how this grandma’s love shines so bright.
“I didn’t ask to give up my life for this, but I did it because I love them, and I would do it again 100 times,” Sosa said. “I’d do it again because of love.”
Sosa’s story is one which CDHS recognized throughout Colorado as part of National Adoption Month. Sosa shared the great impact grandparents have in supporting their family.
“They take over because they don’t want to see their grandchildren be stuck in a foster care system where they have no idea where they’re at,” said Sosa.
Now, her daughter is clean and the two co-parent the children together.
Her piece of advice to those in the same situation is to recognize the positive change they are bringing to their family and to the future.
“Focus on what you’ll gain and not what you lose,” Sosa said. “That’s the biggest thing because you’re gaining these beautiful children and you’re giving them a chance at a life.”
Amanda Ledbetter, the Program Administrator for the Pueblo County Department of Human Services reflected on National Adoption Month and the need is right now in the community.
“We’re always recruiting for foster parents,” Ledbetter said. “We can also work with kinship families to become certified as well, meaning that they’re a kinship foster home.”
Ledbetter spoke on how the Pueblo County Department of Human Services work to find kinship families for the children by finding a comfortable and stable home.
“We have approximately 60 families that we’re working with in the kinship arena and that they are considered kinship families in either taking in or helping to provide some sort of something for these kiddos, like maybe transportation, maybe getting them to sports, or whatever it could be,” said Ledbetter.
For foster care inquires, you can call 719-583-6889 or find information online.
Sosa is working to create a support group to help provide a community for those caring for children that might not be their own.
“I would like to teach them, education on addiction and different things like that,” Sosa said. “I’d like to bring in speakers and then I just want them to be able to have a place, a safe space to talk, to be able to tell their stories.”
She is planning a meeting on Dec. 2 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. at Rawlings Library on Abriendo Avenue.