Designer purse leads a 29-year-old to make a terrible discovery

For most people in a caring relationship, giving presents isn't anything out of the ordinary. It doesn't have to be something fancy. Even a small but attentive gesture can show the other person that they're appreciated and bring a little fresh joy into their everyday life.

Jade Lagden, from the English town of Chessington, is an elementary school teacher and mother of an 11-year-old. And she was thrilled when her boyfriend Tony surprised her with a brand new designer handbag. 

It was so practical and looked so good that she started taking it with her everywhere. She had no idea that this very bag would end up sending her to the doctor in the nick of time.

Right away she started feeling pain in her shoulder on the same side that she always carried the new bag. The pain shot up into her neck. She assumed the bag was the culprit.

Put it down more? Ok. Take some stuff out... Yes, that too. Nothing helped.

Six weeks later the pain had gotten steadily worse and she decided to go to the doctor. Maybe the bag had given her a real sprain. But a CT scan showed that the terrible ache in her shoulder was due not just to the bag, but to something else as well.  

Jade got a shocking diagnosis: at 29, she had breast cancer. It had already metastasized into her liver and lymph nodes. The pain in her shoulder came from a nerve that connects the liver to the throat.

It actually wasn't the first time that Jade had cancer. She'd already gone through a battle with it in 2013 and overcome it with the help of radiation and chemotherapy — or so she thought. She'd even had a mastectomy, getting implants afterward.

But the brutal surgery on top of the other therapies hadn't been enough. It doesn't seem that at this point Jade's cancer will be curable, but she is determined to slow down its progress with chemotherapy and to make the most of the time that she has with her son.

Without the bag there to make the pain more intense, it wouldn't have been agonizing enough for her to get it checked so quickly. And the cancer would have spread much further. (How many of us can relate to that? The wait-and-see method of dealing with our aches and pains.) 

So the bag literally secured her that much more time with her son, her students, and just to enjoy her life.

Jade's friends Hannah Forbes and Zoe Corcoran have started a crowdfunding page to raise money for her: their idea is that in the time she has left with her family she should be able to have as many wonderful moments as possible for her son to remember her by.

What an incredible response to the situation they're all facing.

To draw attention to their effort they've committed to doing something memorable — and brave — themselves, they're going skydiving in February of 2017! 

This strong mother has expressed her gratitude for everything her family, friends — and even strangers! – have given her and wants to encourage others to pay attention to early warning signs their bodies are sending them.

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