I agree with N8UZE. Even though I'm not repeating his words, I urge you to re-read his post and take it very seriously.
You said something about getting help in the Lansing, Michigan area.
Excellent idea! Practicing by yourself as N8UZE recommended will work, and is a very good way to get yourself where you want to be - but if you have a practice buddy, it is easier. Doing both - by yourself practice and with a friend - is probably the best.
Go to http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/club/clubsearch.phtml
and search Michigan. Then text searching the page, I found "Lansing" three times. Two of those clubs specifically mentioned "help for newcomers".
Try to find a club and some hams, in your area, willing to help you.
Btw, to upgrade to General, besides the code that we have been discussing, you'll need to take a written test. Don't forget to study for it too.
You said you were an old tech. We are assuming that you are a 'No Code' Tech. Just for the record, is that correct?
If you had a Tech license from way back - circa 1987 or so - then you might need some different advice.