"So I was thinking about being an egg donor," says my passenger. I ask her why, and she tells me about money to pay off her student loans and how safe donating is, and I start laughing.

"Oh, trust me, they are so downplaying the risks. I did it about eight years ago, even though I knew they were bullshitting me about the statistics."

Now she looks nervous. "What happened to you?"

"Well, let's see, I had a sort of pre-menopause while still only in my 20s. My hair thinned out because of this. I had to go on the pill to get my hormones balanced again, but it's never fully grown back. Gained 20 pounds, too."

"Wow, that really sucks."

"Yep. And the hormone shots hurt far more than they tell you, trust me."

She ponders all this. "Tell me, though, if you actually knew how bad it could be, why did you do it?"

Fair question. "One of my cats had cancer. It was either pay for his treatment, or just let him die slowly."

"Do you regret having done it?"

"Honestly, I do, for the most part. I couldn't truly recommend it to you." I pause.... "There was this one overwhelming moment, though. Someone brought me flowers from another woman somewhere else in the building, waiting on another cold steel table at that early morning hour. A woman who I would never meet, thanking me so profusely for what I was about to do. I still have the card."