Small Talk, Big Feelings: An Ode to Voice Notes & All the Women We Send Them to

You could be folding laundry, tidying your flat, putting cream on your cracked nipples or sobbing over your broken marriage, and voice notes will accompany you through all of it - from the mundane to the messy.

Voice notes are the romantic correspondence of our generation, sealed with a loving mumble or simply signed off with an awkward “so yeah, not sure if that made any sense but…” because no one who’s ever started a voice note truly knows how to end one. The etiquette is fuzzy and human and therein lies the charm. 

They have become the holy grail of communication amongst friends, both those who still share the first letters of your postcode and those who don’t. These chatty bursts of familiarity,  unpolished ramblings, streams of consciousness and every shade of life from the softest light to the deepest hue of heartbreak, serve as a reminder that we’re connected, even when we feel like we’re adrift. 

It all lives here in waves of green and white; the sound of sisterhood.

You could be folding laundry, tidying your flat, putting cream on your cracked nipples or sobbing over your broken marriage, and voice notes will accompany you through all of it – from the mundane to the messy – both an easy-listening playlist of female greats and a sacred space to hear yourself out, the likes of which phone calls and text messages simply can’t compete with. 

For those of us who would rather sit through a date with the Tinder Swindler than answer an unexpected phone call, this sweet audio tonic offers a happy medium, meaning we can still enjoy all the good parts of a phone call with none of the faff, commitment or fear that usually comes with you know, actually answering the phone (a bit excessive and very 2007) or, god forbid, leaving a voicemail (the ick we give ourselves when our mouths cease to function after the beep). 

Voice notes, or rather the friends on the other end of them, are a very forgiving format, sometimes left unplayed for weeks other times unwrapped within seconds, and it really doesn’t matter which of those is your MO. The same can’t be said when it comes to WhatsApp messages left on a big dgaf grey tick, or, perhaps even worse, a couple of blue ones. So, as well as being pleasing to the ear and good for the soul, they’re also convenient little dramatic monologues. 

Wherever you stand on this digital audio phenomenon, it’s nice to know that whatever you’re feeling, you can always put it in a voice note, babe *All Saints voice*

A quick breathy catch-up. Being vulnerable on your terms. Somewhere for your heart to spill over. Wild feelings. Untamed. Unedited. Unafraid. Walls come down. How did the job interview go? I’ve been thinking. Podcast incoming. Choosing when to listen. Responding in your own time. Familiar voices you love. Honesty. No pressure. Just walking up a hill. Just waiting for a doctor’s appointment. Too rambly? Bin it. Extracts of emotion. A gentle way to check-in. Warmth. I think I’m gonna leave him. How are you actually feeling? It’s fucking freezing today. This is hard. Heartache. I’m still not pregnant. I’m sitting in my car waiting to go to the gym. That’s the first time I’ve actually said it out loud. I cried for a week. I hope you’ve put me on double time (X2). Omg, you need to read this book. It’s going really well actually. My neighbours kept me up shagging last night. It would be lovely to see you. I had a moment last week when I thought I can’t do this. This week’s been a lot. I’ve got the wedding blues. What are you wearing? Just to say. Confession time. I’m currently cleaning bath toys, this is what my life has come to. Sound bites of love. We don’t talk about Bruno. Honestly, I’m fine. I thought we could go for a roast. Let me know. Just quickly. I was listening to a podcast the other day and thought of you. It’s so nice to hear your voice. You’re enough. I’m sorry you’re hurting. I feel like a failure. Hangovers and food comas. I can update you all tomorrow. A little act of connection. I understand. When are we walking next? I forgot to tell you. How is your heart doing? Weekend debriefs and tragic dates. Infectious laughter. You did the right thing. Shall we book Mexico this week? Happy Wednesday. You bloody enjoy that cheese toasty and get back to me later. Faceless freedom. Did he find your clitoris in the end? Happiness and healing in green and white. I saw this TikTok the other day. Play button. Pause button. Really listening. Cooking dinner. I’m running late. Belly laughs. So was it an STI? Pouring wine. I’ll be honest. A mixed tape of emotions. Small talk. Big feelings. Snapshots of sisterhood. Good luck you’ll smash it. Thank you for coming to my TED talk. A moment of reckoning. Send me your new address pls. It’s so shit. Soothing. No spoilers. Have you done today’s Wordle? What did the results say? I just need to vent for a minute. Do we book a bottomless brunch? You’ll never guess what. Comfort. I can hear your vulnerability. Have a good day. I have a theory. A reminder that you’re not alone. Drama. Here it goes. Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you. Thanks for listening. I just heard myself. Like being together, even when we’re not. Fill us in. Just checking in with you. Notes to nourish. Can we talk about Married At First Sight Australia. Storytime. This is hard for me to say. Gtg, I’ve got my smear. Sorry, my voice is all croaky, this is the first time I’ve had to use it all day. It’s good to talk. This really is a fucking podcast now. The limit does not exist. Something really embarrassing just happened. That must be hard. Grateful for you. 

⌃ words that water women.