Cognitive overload!

By Caitlin Kelly

I bet you’re hitting it as well.

Right now, I’m juggling:

Dealing with administrative/tedious tasks to access services at two Canadian government websites

Same with a navigator for healthcare who needs a lot of detail from me (like how can I possibly know in advance which hospitals and doctors I want?!)

Worried about a younger half-brother recently diagnosed with cancer; it looks treatable but he has already had major surgery and face a lot of aggressive chemo

Worried about two very over-burdened friends, one with an elderly mother and one whose job is from hell

Trying to find an editor to make a commitment — sight unseen –– to a series of stories I want to produce to win one of two highly competitive fellowships. This obstacle is extremely unfair to any freelancer, forcing us to force editors into commitments months in advance, and both of the places I plan to apply insist upon it.

Polishing the fellowship application.

The war in Ukraine

More COVID spreading with the latest variant

Climate change, as this New York magazine story reminds us:

Yes, there is a war going on, not to mention an ongoing pandemic, an inflation and energy crisis, and plenty of other, more quotidian concerns besides. But many of the same figures calling, screamingly, for attention in 2018 are doing the same this time around. U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres has ushered the new report into the world with familiar fire-and-brimstone rhetoric. “Nearly half of humanity is living in the danger zone — now,” he said. “Many ecosystems are at the point of no return — now. Unchecked carbon pollution is forcing the world’s most vulnerable on a frog march to destruction — now.” The report itself concluded with a similar flourish: “Any further delay in concerted global action will miss a brief and rapidly closing window to secure a livable future.” In his introductory remarks, Guterres underscored the point: “Delay means death.”

7 thoughts on “Cognitive overload!

  1. You really do have a ridiculous amount of stuff to handle right now. I hope the coffee’s good, and you certainly have a right to complain. I hope your half brother comes through OK, and that you get the editor commitments you need.

  2. each of those parts alone would be stressful to deal with. when combined they must feel overwhelming. I’m hoping some of these situations ease up for you sooner rather than later and you get some relief.

  3. Jan Jasper

    Caitlin, it’s good to know know which hospital(s) have the most expertise for one’s particular risk factors. If I had heart trouble, I’d want to go to the hospital renowned for cardio stuff. I’m not sure how much control we have, once in an ambulance, and we may be taken to the closest hospital to be stabilized – still, good to know…. I have cognitive overload from things that are not life-threatening, but annoying as heck. Dealing with theft, possible theft, and spam! My credit card number was recently stolen. I’d set up recurring monthly donations to several non profits, so I had to notify them all of my new card number. And I had to notify tons of providers – internet, cell phone, Health insurance, car insurance, house insurance, gas company, water company, etc. What made this even more time-consuming is that around the same time, I closed my previous email address because I was getting hundreds of spams every day. I soon learned that many organizations use your email address as an identifier, so I spent hours going thru phone trees, trying to reach the person who would update my card and email. Also, due to my ongoing battle with porch pirates. I had ADT install video doorbells – which turned out to be complete garbage. I had them replaced with a different model, but that took many hours of communication with ADT. Another hassle – I wanted to terminate a no-longer-needed service that cost $4.99 a month. The company made it so difficult, it became clear it was their business model – they figured the customer would give up and keep paying $4.99 a month for something they no longer needed. Took me 2 hours to get them to stop charging me. None of this is life-threatening, but it has consumed dozens of hours of my time for the past several months. I’m about ready to return to the horse-and-buggy days.

    1. Oh my!!!!! So sorry to read all this!!!!

      I know I want my local hospital and HSS and probably White Plains ONLY because (!) a few years ago I went to our local and thought I was having a heart attack (not, thank heaven) and was told they can’t do stents, only at WP.

      How on earth we are expected to anticipate everything is CRAZY!

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