WASILLA — Abby Lampley is ready for the next chapter of her life, a life abroad filled with love and exciting new adventures right around the corner.
Lampley said that she’s come a long way since she entered the MyHouse doors. She was an 18-year-old high school drop out, and she was homeless and jobless.
Nearly six years later she’s leaving the state to eventually make her way to Scotland so she can build a new life with her new soon to be husband.
“Yeah, it’s a good feeling,” Lampley said.
MyHouse founder and Executive Director Michelle Overstreet, her colleagues and several others threw a launch party for Lampley to send her off with plenty of laughs and memories to take with her.
“It feels like I’m leaving my nest… I love this place. It’s hard to leave. It’s my family. It’s time to chase my dreams and my future,” Lampley said.
Overstreet said that she was swimming in an “emotional soup” over the fact she had to say goodbye to someone so cherished in their circle.
“Today we’re launching Abby. I guess that’s one of the things that’s a little bit bittersweet about what we do. We walk alongside clients and support them and encourage them and tell them anything is possible; and they make that transition from homeless to stable and capable, to following their dreams; and then you have to let go,” Overstreet said. “She will definitely be missed. She is such a bright, shining star wherever she goes.”
While everyone ate pizza inside the Gathering Grounds Cafe, Overstreet and other familiar faces shared their favorite memories of Lampley.
“You are a big part of why I fell in love with MyHouse,” Mike Sisson said to Lampley.
Lampley said that MyHouse has proven to be an invaluable resource and warm home base with passionate people and effective programs that helped her develop into the kind of person she wanted to be.
“It’s beyond words. I never would have imagined I’d be where I am today… Somehow It’s my life and I get to live it,” Lampley said.
Not only did Lampley succeed as a MyHouse client, but she also went above and beyond once she became an employee, taking on mentorship roles and using what she learned to help others.
“I was the client who refused to leave… I would always joke that I stayed around long enough for Michelle to pay me,” Lampley said with a laugh.
Lampley said that it’s vital to have organizations like MyHouse in the community. She said they offer local youth the “sense of belonging that everyone needs.”
“MyHouse is an amazing investment responsible for helping youth who are lost,” Lampley said. “They’re always welcome back… It’s more than just a resource. It’s a home to a lot of youth.”
Lampley said that they’ll return to Alaska to hold the wedding ceremony. If the borders are open, they’ll fly off to Scotland where she’ll be met by the warm embrace of her new family.
“It’s a whole new chapter, a whole new world; and I’ll be back,” Lampley said.
Lampley said that she’s flying down to the Lower 48 to spend time with her grandmother. Since Scotland’s borders are still locked down, she’s going to see if they can get in after the wedding.
Lampley said her finance was born and raised in Scotland and currently resides there. She said they started dating two years ago, and visited each other’s homelands. He proposed to her during her visit to Scotland.
Now that she’s at this point, Lampley said that if she could send a message back to her 18-year-old self, she would tell her, “keep fighting, and there’s hope and to believe in yourself.”
For more information about MyHouse, call 907-373-4357 or visit myhousematsu.org.
Contact Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman reporter Jacob Mann at email@example.com