Leave a Message After the Beep

messy thoughts

Emma is the editor & creator (and occasionally writer) for The Messy Heads. She enjoys yellow curry, print media, and currently is traveling through Europe. IG / @emmawxyx

I HAVE this weird thing with voicemails. I rarely check them, but I never delete them. Actually, when I first moved to Seattle, I applied for a job at American Apparel and never heard back. Five months later I took a deep breath and weeded through all of my un-listened to voicemails, and found that I had gotten the job. Oops.

There is something so personal about someone’s voice recording that is intended only for you. Listening to a voicemail gives you an outside perspective, and not only tells you a lot about that person, but yourself, and your relationship to that person. In that moment they are left alone with their thoughts, a monologue for you to listen to over and over. They often stumble on their words, and repeat themselves, and almost always end with some form of “okay, bye.”

I have voicemails saved as far back as 2012, some I still have yet to gather the courage to listen to. I think, yeah, maybe they take up a lot of space, and maybe I should just delete them. But then I wouldn’t have that moment, frozen in time of when that person needed to tell me something so bad that they recorded they left a message that to me says they care, and they want me to listen.

These voicemails may not mean much to you, but that’s the whole point. Each has a deeper meaning, a backstory, and layers underneath the small space of time that exists after the beep.


July 23, 2013

“Hey Emma it’s Ti, I’m here at starbucks and I’m waiting and I’m outside. Just call me and let me know when you are on your way. Give me a call back as soon as you can, Ok. Bye mems”

April 21, 2014

“Hey sweetheart. I was just calling to see if you were still up. I’m going to bed and just wanted to tell you goodnight and I will talk to you tomorrow. Hope you had a good day at school. Bye.”

September 18, 2014

“EMMA I’M DRUNK. And so is everybody else here. Everyone is drunk. That kid is definitely drunk. We are all kind of drunk. You are going to get this in the morning and be like what the fuck. Goodnight.”

October 7, 2014

“My phone fell into a lake, but thats a story for another day. I tried earlier to tell you how I felt. This is probably a terrible idea and I get that. My fear is it’s going to freak you the fuck out and we are never going to talk again. But honestly I don’t know when or how I’m going to find the best way to tell you. I’m not sitting here asking you to be with me because I’m not good enough for you, and I know that…. If I spend every day of my life proving to you that you matter, then fine. Fine. Everyday I am not around you is the worst day of my life. I hope I can convince you that it’s me and it’s always been me. You probably stopped listening five minutes ago, but that’s ok. I just need to tell you I am hopelessly in love with you and will be until I die. So… bye.”

Oct 17, 2014

“hi emma its chubs, listen, uh, make sure you and India eat dinner. Imma tell JB you will not be home, Suede is sleeping at her friends house again tonight. So make sure you guys eat. Talk to you later.”

October 29, 2014

“Hi Em! Sorry I didn’t pick up, I was on the phone with the bank because my credit card was stolen. Anyway, I love you and I miss you, please don’t cry, and call me back when you can. Okay. Bye. Love you.”

December 8, 2014


December 31, 2014

“Uhm, Ermy. Uhm. I hope that you are not ignoring me, and if you are, I am sorry. I am very sorry. And please, contact me, because I am really sad when you don’t talk to me, and ok bye.”

January 1, 2015

“Hey baby, it’s me. I’m just driving home. Hope you had a decent new years and feel better tomorrow. I love you, and I will talk to you tomorrow. okay.”

January 30, 2015

“Goodmorning my little moon-baby I miss you! It’s raining in Vegas this morning and it reminded me of you, and Seattle, and all that shiz. Yeah! I am actually driving to Green Valley right now, my brother is painting a mural there. But, I miss you! And I just got done working out and I was literally falling asleep driving home so that’s why I am calling you. So I love you, miss you, and hope you have a great day. Call me when you get a chance, goodbye!”

February 2, 2015

“Hi Em. I just got out of my friendship communications class. When you were having trouble last year, and had to go to the hospital, I feel horrible I never visited you. That was a really bad thing for me to do, to not be there for you. I don’t know why I am crying. I just wanted to talk to you and say I was sorry. And I love you. Okay, bye.”

March 10, 2015

“Hi Em. I’m just driving back from California right now and I miss you, and I miss having those long talks with you while we are driving. UGH. It sucks. And I’m passing the exit we would’ve gotten off if we were going to Laguna, and it sucks, because you aren’t here. No one else wanted to go in the water with me this weekend. Well, one other person did, but not like you, you fricken fish. Yeah. I dunno. Just wanted to see what you were doing, probably doing homework or eating thai food to be honest. Anyway, I love you, and I will talk to you later. Bye.”

Mar 16, 2015

“Hey Emma, I am leaving you a voicemail because you left me a voicemail and I would feel guilty if I didn’t leave you a voicemail. But, your thing is funny because its high pitched, ‘hiiiiiii it’s emma, leave a message after the beep!’ It reminds me of you standing in your kitchen talking into that one slide-up phone we used to give you crap for. SO call me back. Oh wait, I forgot, you are at that dinner thing, the steak house. Well…. I hope you are eating…. something. I had sushi, veggie rolls. It was good. Okay. I love you. Goodbye.”


October 3, 2014

“Hi india its Ang. Call me back when you get this you magnificent soul. I wanna talk to you, okay, love you bye.”

October 11, 2014

*played my “meet india” video from the messy heads youtube*

November 26, 2014

“Hi India its gramma, would you please give me a call so we know what’s going on… I sure would appreciate it. Thank you, bye.

December 3, 2014

“Hey India it’s Mike. Give me a call when you get the opportunity, I just wanted to talk to you about going to Hawaii on the first week of February. So I just wanted to see who is all going with us, uhm we’re going to be doing a runway fashion show on the north shore. We have a lot of things that will be going on, it’s gonna be a huge deal. Give me a call and we’ll go over some details. Alright? I hope you have a great holiday, talk to you soon..”

December 18, 2014

“Hi India, its me. Call me back, okay? bye.”

Jan 5, 2015

“Uhh hi Cyn or India were trying to find the car on long term parking level 6, and umm it doesn’t appear to be here. please call us so we can get some more information..we lost the car. thanks bye.”

January 8, 2015

“Hey india it’s mom. I just left your school, you need to call me later on. At the end of your day and at the end of my day and we’re gonna talk about school. okay, bye.”

*I was so scared*

Jan 9, 2015

“HI BOO BOO, just calling to check in. bye.”

January 31, 2015

“Hey baby, just about to turn in. I just wanted to tell you that I love you and see what’s up. Alright? Sleep tight and I love you and i’ll talk to you in the morning.”

February 7, 2015

“HEY GIRL, WHATCHA DOONIN? Daddy here! On my way back to Vegas, give me a buzz. Going to the salon to write some payroll checks, and then I’m free. If you wanna hang out tonight, go to a movie, or maybe dinner. Let me know.”

February 12, 2015

“Uhhhh.. why do I have a roll of toilet paper in my car? And then I have chocolate covered raisins… should i put the raisins on the toilet paper and leave it somewhere? Is that the trick or what are we doing here….any way. BYYYEE.”

February 22, 2015


March 13, 2015

“I just wanted to tell you that I love you, no matter what. I love you so much.”

April 4, 2015

“Hey boo boo, I just wondered if you wanted me to pick you up before I go downtown, or pick you up after? I just…give me a call. bye.”


listen to your voicemails & send them to us on our tumblr

stay messy


  1. Lydia says

    This inspired me and moved me so much. I love you guys! keep doing what your doing!!!

  2. briana says

    hello emma and india. i have known of you guys for a few months now and i’m like obsessed with you (not in a weird way haha). i really like your fashion and your love for wanting to travel the world. you guys are always moving and living life and i look up to that. it gives me inspiration to live every moment like it’s my last. i am also intrested in photography so i find interest in your videos. you guys are so cool and wish i were friends with you. 🌞💓

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