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Kayla and Andy’s Adoption Story

Written by Legal Aid WV


Clients Kayla and Andy hold their daughter, Kinsley
Kayla, Kinsley, and Andy in 2023.

Kinsley is a happy, smiley baby, and her parents, Andy and Kayla, are both pretty happy these days, too. But their path to where they are now was not exactly traditional.

Andy and Kayla have been married for 14 years and desperately wanted to become parents together, but Kayla has PCOS and has not been able to get pregnant. This was a devastating blow to Kayla, but Andy has a son from a previous marriage, so they felt fortunate to be a family of three.

Last year, Kayla unexpectedly got an offer from one of her relatives: She was pregnant but was not prepared to raise a child. She asked Kayla, “Do you want this baby?”

Kayla and Andy were a little surprised but immediately said yes.

Not long before the due date, Kayla was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. She was determined to be healthy to raise this baby and had her thyroid removed in the summer of 2022.

“Trying to figure out health problems is hard,” says Kayla. “But Kinsley was born in September, and I made sure to be there.”

Not only was Kayla at the hospital for the birth but she got to cut the umbilical cord. Andy and Kayla had names picked out and ready to go—Andy chose the first name, and Kayla chose the middle name.

Unfortunately, CPS (Child Protective Services) stepped in right after Kinsley was born, and she was admitted to the hospital. They didn’t know before the birth, but Kinsley’s mother had been using drugs during her pregnancy.

“I wish she had told me, but I know she was trying to get clean,” says Kayla. “Kinsley was in the hospital for six days before we could take her home. We stayed all the time in the hospital so she didn’t go into state custody.”

After they brought Kinsley home, Kayla and Andy got to work. By November, they had gotten guardianship by themselves, and they were working on adoption when they got a letter from Legal Aid of WV.

Clients Kayla and Andy pose with their attorney, David, and daughter, Kinsley
Kayla, Kinsley, and Andy with their attorney, David, in 2023.

LAWV Attorney David received a case for Kayla and Andy after Kayla’s sister-in-law submitted an online application for them a few months prior. Because it was an adoption request, it was not marked as a high priority case. David was eventually able to send them a letter about their case and provided his contact information.

“When we got in touch with him, David said we already did the hard part,” says Kayla. “CPS had assigned Kinsley a guardian ad litem who told us we definitely needed an attorney for the adoption. David helped us make sure we got the adoption finalized.”

David adds: “The day we went to Court, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.”

Kinsley is almost a year old now, and she goes to physical therapy and receives services from WV Birth to Three. She has made excellent progress from the tiny baby experiencing withdrawal in her first weeks of life.

“I wouldn’t change anything about Kinsley,” says Kayla. “And I would have done whatever I had to make sure we got her adopted. Working with David was amazing. He was honest and straightforward and stuck by us the whole way.

“I’ve had people ask about my attorney, and I tell them to apply to Legal Aid. I tell them, you might get it. Legal Aid might not be for everyone, but it was for us.”

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