Lou, I totally feel you. Although I've gone twice in the past 10 years, this is my very first real season snowboarding. Like everyone else, the heel edge was my safety net and could NOT muster the courage to practice toe side. In fact, after 2 days, I seriously considered selling all my gear (which I bought spontaneously in Nov.) and just quitting altogether; I just didn't think it was for me.
The eureka moment came when I took lessons, and believe me, having a good instructor helps a LOT. I barely started linking my turns after the 4th day, did my first blue run on the 6th day, and 11 sessions later, I'm perfectly comfortable on blue runs without stopping.
Here's the catch-I've been boarding every weekend since mid-December...also putting myself in crazy debt, but I went from hating it to obsessing over it, and getting better and better with each session.
There were a few comments above talking about initiating turns with your FRONT leg. Man, that was one of THE best advice I ever had when trying to turn toe-side. Next-best advice is to get pads. I still wear my knee and butt pads as I still catch a nasty edge once in a while, usually when trying to get daring.
Anyway, best of luck to you. It sounds like you're not planning on giving up, so I imagine you're going to excel in it.