Hey Rob, welcome! I think you'll like it here...
Sounds like you & I got bit by the coding bug at about the same time... I guess I'd have been 10 years old the first time I even saw a computer (in 1983, that would be). I was lucky, I got to follow my ambition through senior school and on to college (well, Polytechnic, which is a kind of University-lite....). Spent the last 20-odd years writing software!
Funnily enough, I prefer to do machining these days, and thoroughly enjoying using my CNC mill. Sure, it's ancient & uses an obsolete programming language, but it does for me. And I'll have to learn G-code anyway, when I get my Mazak lathe going... one day.
Anyway, welcome to the mad modders! We're all mad here, but in the very best of ways