I have been a user of regular expressions since my early ed/ex/vi days in the early '70s. I can't imagine working on text without them. I remember 'grokking' (shows my age) that a regexp is just a description/template/pattern, and the lights turned on.
If you enjoy constructing regexps, play a bit with (f)lex, a program that generates lexical analyzers that can read files with known structure and split them into usable 'words' (technically, tokens). I am often surprised by how many problems are amenable to solution by a combination of lexical processing and subsequent parsing.
Yes, I know I am weird. Can't help it, and really don't want to change.