Vox, voxing, Voxer. It’s a noun. It’s a verb. It’s the app busy moms didn’t know they needed. Voxer was originally designed for workers who need to communicate but who are physically spread out. But it is so much more — especially to me and a tight-knit group of my friends. I’m not a tech savvy person so the fact I’m writing a Knoxville Moms Blog post about this app speaks volumes. (Oh irony!)
Speaking is where Voxer stands out in comparison to other forms of social media like our beloved Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Voxer describes itself as a walkie-talkie system. I would say it’s more like leaving a group voicemail to all your besties at once. You can download Voxer from the app store, and it’s available for both iPhone and Android devices. Once you create your free account you can form a chat group; that’s where the fun really starts! In addition to leaving a voice message, you can also send messages and photos in your chat group just like a group text. Voxer alerts you when someone is leaving a message and then you listen at your convenience. It’s 24-7, which is perfect for busy moms who often have to steal a moment to make a phone call and then find their friend doesn’t pick up. (Do we still call our friends?)
The friends with whom I vox came into my life nearly 20 years ago (yikes)!
We all worked for our sorority as traveling consultants for a year right after we graduated college. We’re Xennials, so I got my first cell phone for that job. I was also new to email, having first learned how to use it during my undergrad years. (In case you haven’t heard, Xennials are the recently identified microgeneration between Gen X and Millennials. We had an analogue youth and have a digital adulthood.) While my consultant friends and I crisscrossed the country our lifeline was a group voicemail (pre-Facebook, if you can imagine!). Even though we were working together we traveled solo. The road can be a lonely place (isn’t that a Willie Nelson song?). We laughed, we cried and we counted the days to our next in-person reunion on endless group voicemails, and it wasn’t unusual to hit the ten-minute mark when leaving one. When that job wrapped and real life really began, we relied on the standard group email to stay in touch. We all know how that goes: a flurry of emails and then radio silence until we started to plan our next in-person reunion. Many years, husbands and kids later someone suggested we try Voxer. This idea was met with resistance for months. (Hello busy moms with husbands/kids/jobs/etc.!)
When we finally decided to give it a go, it was a game changer. How had we lived for so long without Voxer???
This app taps into something powerful. It is the sound of a friend’s unique voice, one that, in our case, we don’t hear every day. (These friends stretch from Arizona to Ohio to Louisiana and beyond.) Just like a song can take you to a memory, a voice takes you to the heart of a friend that a text, Facebook or Instagram just can’t duplicate. My friend Jenny said it perfectly, “Leaving voice messages feels more personal and engaging.” You can hear their tears, their laughter and, I believe, feel it more intensely than just reading an email. We share the mundane and typical “catching up” kind of talk. We vent, but things get raw too. We share our concerns and fears knowing our friends will lift us up. But, the act of speaking those concerns and fears out loud is cathartic too; similar, I think, to going to confession.
This is a bold statement, but I believe Voxer has made us better friends and will continue to help our friendship grow.
Your mom tribe may be right here in Knoxville, or it may be spread out. Either way, Voxer can help you give one another even more support than you already do. It will probably feel funny to hit the button to leave your first Voxer (it did for me). But, soon you’ll be voxing in the school pickup line, while you’re pumping and even after a couple glasses of wine. (Drunk voxing is a real thing! Sleep voxing is also very real.) So, hit download on this amazing app and start laughing, crying and catching up with your friends ASAP!