When my ILLNESS is like a bad EX . . .

If you decide to change your orientation to life.

If you decide to change your priorities.

Prepare to be TESTED.

*slightly pained giggle*

It’s a good thing I have a lot of support and a good sense of humor!! And faith.

Life is too short to be upset.

I needed a moment to vent though.

And now . . . I’m back to my #boundlesslife

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This video is for my new blog boundlesslife but I thought I’d share it here too.

Frankly, it was terrifying sharing such a candid video of myself (and photos too) but . . . if I can have peace with my body (medical devices, defibrillator, scars and all) maybe other people can be inspired to love themselves too?

Here is the video on YouTube. If you like it, please subscribe to my YouTube channel.


Here is one of the photos.

Nude - far (small)

Thanks for sharing my boundlesslife with me.

#skinimin #thrive #boundlesslife

INSTAGRAM: https://instagram.com/kns_boundless.life/

BLOG: Coming soon!!

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/knswriter/

PINTEREST: https://www.pinterest.com/kns544/knss-boundlesslife/

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/knswriter

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Adding BOUNDLESS to my Life . . .

Had a revelation about being more happy if I put less focus on my health. I think that makes perfect sense.

In keeping with that perspective I will be blogging on here at about a once a month basis . . . and putting my primary energy towards a new online “entity” – boundlesslife.

For now boundlesslife is a YouTube channel, an Instagram account and a Pinterest board. Eventually there will be a blog too. And I will post from both karennicolesmith and boundlesslife on my existing Facebook professional page and on my Twitter.

What is boundlesslife?

Screen Shot 2015-11-04 at 9.38.11 PM

It is a forum for me to talk about the things I do to stay happy and balanced.

For me that’s fitness, fashion, food. Decor and DIY. The balance act of yoga and meditation. Having fun!!

Here is a link to the first boundlesslife video on YouTube. https://youtu.be/I8uN-RmLFtY

I believe if I concentrate on making my life outside of dialysis and heart disease better (basically more fun) I will have an amazing overall benefit! I believe this new blog, boundlesslife, will enable me to flourish by pushing me to live my best life.

Please join me in this new lifestyle blog. I am enjoying it so much already – even all the video editing!!

Here’s a little sneak peak . . .

Untitled design-2

If you like what you see please, SUBSCRIBE, give me a THUMBS UP or COMMENT.

Thank you!!!

INSTAGRAM: https://instagram.com/kns_boundless.life

BLOG: Coming soon!!

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/knswriter/

PINTEREST: https://www.pinterest.com/kns544/knss-boundlesslife/

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/knswriter

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“Patient As Provider” – Barry Smith Symposium . . .

I was fortunate enough to be asked to be a speaker and panelist in the Barry Smith Symposium at Queen’s University a few weeks ago. It was an amazing experience.


Faculty (physicians and administrators), panelists, students and organizers of the 2015, Barry Smith Symposium.

This is the second annual symposium, named about one of the Deans of Medicine, Dr. Barry Smith. It’s organized by medical students and the audience was primarily medical students and health science students.

I joined a panel comprised of Leslee Thompson (the CEO of Kingston General Hospital), Dr. Brian Goldman (an ER doctor and the host of CBC’s White Coats, Black Arts) and Dr. Chris Simpson (a cardiologist).


From Left to Right: Dr. Pike, Dr. Brian Goldman, Dr. Chris Simpson, Leslee Thompson and Karen Nicole Smith.

This link will give you more detail on the event and the panelists. http://meds.queensu.ca/smith_symposium/home

I was pleased to see that the event organizers were interested in a challenging and critical look at the role patients play in their own health care.

We were asked to consider:

  • How to educated patients about their health as to help them to be better participants – promoting health literacy.
  • How to level the information playing field – in cases where patients don’t have access to technologies that can help them better manage their health.
  • Who’s perspective is most important in considering a patient’s illness? The patient perspective or the physicians?

When it was my turn to share my perspective, my goal was to show that patients could be capable participants in their healthcare – but at our level and on our terms. I wanted the students to know that patients can be deeply motivated to be part of our healthcare teams. And that we are already managing our care in thoughtful and complex ways – with the best outcomes happening when patients and their healthcare teams work together.


My chance to share the patient perspective.

Discussion and questions were very interesting.

From my perspective it was encouraging to hear the physicians talk about being compassionate amongst themselves. And an examination of how doctors and patients have traditionally functioned . . . and a call for the student doctors to consider how these roles can be improved.


Leslee Thompson and I mulling over some thoughtful comments – no doubt! LOL!

I am thankful for the opportunity to participate in such an exciting and thoughtful forum.

Will the patient/doctor relationship will improve? We’ll see.

Introducing the patient perspective into the culture of medicine – as early as medical school – makes me hopeful that it will.


Feature on the Barry Smith Symposium in the Whig Standard newspaper.

Whig Standard Scan

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Arrival of the Glam Christmas Turkey . . .

Hello!! (Yes, I know it’s been a little while.)

I’ve had some challenges this summer that narrowed my focus away from blogging.

I gave myself some time to get sorted . . . and now I am back.

Two things in particular helped me get back on track.

  1. Receiving a gift from a wonderful lady who reads my blog and who I’ve never met. It’s been a long time (many months) getting this little turkey to me. I appreciate her. The effort that a stranger took to make me something – it means a lot.


    Glam Christmas Turkey!!

2. My Uncle told me to drop the pity party and get back to work. (My family are pretty direct. LOL!)

I want to thank everyone who takes the time to read my blog (and watch my occasional vlog videos). It means a lot to me. Thank you!!

From my perspective, I pray that my words and experiences can have an impact on your life – no matter how small.

And to Aunt May . . . thanks for the stylish Christmas turkey!!

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Sometimes we are just guided towards doing the right things.

A lot of times when I’m on the dialysis machine I will watch stand-up comedy shows.

They are longer videos – to help pass time . . . and I am a person who loves to laugh.


This is a photo of sculptures depicting a good laugh. The artist is David Naman. BTW, just googling pictures of people laughing WILL make you laugh!

I recently learned about Norman Cousins, a man who believed he cured himself of a painful type of arthritis through intensive laughter sessions.

Traditional medicine failed to relieve the pain he was experiencing, so Cousins left the hospital and checked into a hotel. At the hotel he took large doses of vitamin C and watched TV sitcoms and Marx Brothers films. Cousins found that 10 minutes of “belly laughter” allowed him two hours of pain-free sleep. Eventually he actually recovered from the arthritis and wrote a series of best-selling books on the relationship between humor and healing. His account of healing through laughter was described in his book, Anatomy of an Illness as Described by the Patient, which inspired research into the relationship between emotions and health – research that continues to this day.

I don’t believe you have to be sick to benefit from laughing. I think it works for everyone. A good tool in our “keeping ourselves sane toolkit”.

Not sure if science understands how laughter is healing but frankly I don’t care if it’s understand or not. It feels good.

I have to thank Dave Chapelle, Jamie Foxx, Bill Burr, Russell Peters, Louis C. K. and many other stand-up comedians for helping me to get through this time.

And many other difficult times in my life, I should add. I remember playing Eddie Murphy’s Delirious cassette on repeat. Yes, I said “cassette”!! LOL.


This post was inspired by a talk by Dave deBronkart. Here is a link to my blog post about his talk and all the messages he shared. https://karennicolesmith.wordpress.com/2015/06/19/messages-from-a-powerful-interview-with-e-patient-dave/

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