Hello there, Michael Ray! Kind of weird talking to myself. LOL. Thankfully, I found this site very early when I got into BPing finally at age 42. My first major trip had a base weight where you are at. Now I'm 11-12 or so. While I'd like to go lower (for some trips at least), I don't have the finances or get out enough to justify it at this time.
As many others have said, what gear you use is totally a personal choice. Hike Your Own Hike (HYOH) and all that. Yes, there are some here (pretty few IMHO) that love going as light as possible. The new folks would be where you are at and higher and I suspect the majority of longtime members are 10-15, which really isn't that far from you (especially if you have money to spend). But what level you get down to is ultimately up to you. At some point you reach whatever YOUR comfort and safety level is. Many venture below that for a while and then add some things back in as Dean shared above. You're fortunate that you can afford to try some different things to see what will work for you.
More important than gear though are the knowledge and skills that allow you to effectively go lower or save weight without even trying to do so. I've been here almost 4 years now, and I still come upon tips and tricks from others that help me out in some way.
Part of your concern may simply be mindset. You just can't see how you could be comfortable with only 10 pounds of gear. It can be done for sure, but it's true that it may not for YOU. First you may have a different definition for comfort. Second, you're a larger fellow so you'll need larger gear as well so it may be 12 pounds, for example. Plus, you've only been here a month so give it some time. It's not a race to reaching your ideal base weight. Nobody cares what your base weight is though I'll add if you post your gear list and ask for advice on where to drop you'll likely get a few extreme views. :) We're all here to make BPing easier. For some that means going farther faster. For others it's to ease the pain on aging bodies. For others to get to places few people see.
FWIW, I visit backpacker forums as well, NOT for gear & skills but for location advice & reports.
Finally, I hope you also do several shorter hikes first. Make sure your gear works for you and work out the bugs before the longer hike.