SO. I backed up a week ago. I've done a lot of work since then but I accidentally loaded the backup catalog (from a week ago) into Lightroom, which means I'm missing all the work I've done since that backup. Is there a cache somewhere on my computer where I might be able to recover edits made since my last back up?
You opened the backup catalog, but do you still have the "active" catalog? If you do, just go to file/open recent, and choose the other catalog. It will have all of the work recorded that you did using that catalog.
For some reason, the 'active' catalog disappeared under file>open>recent and only shows the backup catalog... so I'm wondering if there's a way to restore the active catalog or a cache where the past few days of work would be hiding.
If you can find the active catalog (the ..lrcat) file with your system browser, just double-click on it. Lightroom will start and would use that catalog.