In a few days most Americans will be sitting down together eating turkey and watching football. Prayers will be said and some will go around the table sharing what they are thankful for.

A few hours later, many will join the obsessive price saving shoppers heading to the malls and stores for Black Friday sales. In a blink of an eye, one will go from family gathering to business as usual. Thankfulness forgotten and the frenzy of every day back in stride.

Why is it that we only allow ourselves the minimal hours of gratitude and peace, but spend years incubating in a world filled with chaos?

I think (my personal opinion) we’d rather hide behind the masks of our jobs and created busyness instead of letting others see us—the true “us” with our human flaws.

We are like trees. Leaves colorful and bright on the outside, but underneath we are just branches—bare branches.

The 2015 year has been a tough one. We continue to be racially divided, exposed to cowardly school shootings, saddened and confused by suicides, and made to fear terrorist attacks. The most recent in Paris.

I wonder if we were all just more truthful, honest, and kind to one another, maybe there wouldn’t be so much suffering and we’d see ourselves as we really are – bared branches in need of loving leaves. In need of random acts of kindness, in need of more smiles, more human connection, and more tender words.

Call me naïve, but why is it more difficult to be honorable and kind, than to be rude and hurtful?

It’s time. Where is the real you? Time to let the leaves camouflaging the branches fall to the ground and be blown away.