It's been one year since I bought my first telescope. In that time I have learned many things. Some on Cloudy Nights, like if I can't afford TeleVue eyepieces for my F/6 then Explore Scientific is good enough. Some I've learned on my own, like an 8" dob is the biggest I want to lift. But the most important factor in I've found in astronomy is the atmosphere. I'd love a Zambuto mirror, but it's not going to make poor seeing turn great. When the atmosphere does surpass normal, even if momentarily, my Zhumell mirror shows me a beauty that touches my heart. That's when I know why I stay up late.
So, what did you astronomers learn in your first year?