Not for nothing but I live near you and surf between Sebastian inlet and indiatlantic mostly and I will say I use my long board more than anything due to the conditions we experience most of the year. I would rather be riding a wave ever so small rather than nothing at all. Maybe take the best advice I think ive read so far and rent a funshape or long board and enjoy the view.
Not being a punk. Just clarifying I don't enjoy riding them at the moment.
Here's how I see it, I once was in your shoes, wanted to learn, had purchased a short board 6'4" BAT, this shape was not for a beginner, but nobody at the surfshop told me this or bothered to even ask what my skill level was, they just wanted to sell me a board, so I got it thinking i'd be shreading like everybody else. Well, sad to say it stunted my growth as a surfer big time, it took me a very long time to get the hang of it having not ever caught a wave in my life. What these people are telling you is good advice my friend. It will help you out in the long run, nobody says you shouldn't keep that board and ride it, but the best thing you can do to really get the feel of catching waves is jump on a LB or a Funshape at 1st, just to get the basics down with minimal obstacles in your way, the shorter boards will be easier to ride once you get some waves under your belt on something more stable. I bring my short board AND my LB / SUP to the beach almost every time I go, just incase conditions dictate that I need a different piece of equipment, my advice would be to go with both, can't go wrong if you have options.