Things I Wish I’d Known Sooner

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

As a mother of twelve, Jaroldeen Edwards has had to find her philosophy in odd moments of reflection snatched from the pressing realities of family life. She has written a book she best describes as conversations she might have had. Recorded here are floating insights, windows of light opened momentarily and sometimes inexplicably during the daily round. These rare and unique epiphanies, garnered from a lifetime, are intensely personal yet will strike a chord with many women, and certainly with mothers. Edwards’ observations are spurred by matter-of-fact events: a new way of making cookies or a glimpse of the infinite in a newborn’s eyes. THINGS I WISH I’D KNOWN SOONER: PERSONAL DISCOVERIES OF A MOTHER OF TWELVE is a potpourri of such maternal observations, flashes of insight, and recognition of the quiet contentment that comes to a person who is busy working at the job at hand.

Edwards has obviously got the habit of recognizing true happiness, the kind of elation caught during quiet moments with loved ones, not sought in frenzy or expense. Like many ideas in her book this is not so much something we could have learned sooner as a notion which cannot be taught. Reading this book is a little like hearing your mother, or talking to your children. Here are words which may make no difference but nonetheless still have to be uttered.

This is a short and sentimental collection. Yet Edwards has isolated truths and stated them simply. Her sincerity cannot be doubted and her observations pleasantly linger.