Welcome! We lived and worked in DFW for many years before we took time off to go cruising full time. We were living in Dallas proper in the Preston Hollow neighborhood. I still have clients in mid-cities. An advantage there is that you are equidistant to all the great US coastal cruising grounds.
The very best thing we did was to do some extensive chartering in the PNW, SF Bay, and Florida. Although we had done all sorts of boating on an ad hoc basis on and off our whole lives, we each got a lot of value taking organized courses from Club Nautique in SFO and Sea Sense in FL, which in turn qualified us to bareboat charter some nice "trawlers".
When it came time to buy a boat to cruise and liveaboard full time, we had a pretty firm idea of our personal "must haves" and "nice to haves". Most important of all we had learned that the cruising life was for us, and got to do a lot of boating all along the way.
"There's the Right Way, the Wrong Way, and what some guy says he's gotten away with"