Old Ford Lover,
Congratulations! Your excellent prognosis for recovery reminds me of a personal "Old Ford Lover" story about prevailing....
My first car, at age 16, was a twenty year old 1949 Ford with a flathead-8-cylinder engine. I bought it for $30. It ran great - 90 mph! However, the fuel pump on that model was notorious for a "vacuum lock" that could be cured only by stopping for awhile - or placing a half a grapefruit over the glass ball of the fuel pump to cool it down... ( These cars were literally repaired with baling wire, a pair of pliers, and a ball pien hammer.)
Over a couple of years I replaced this pump with 4 or 5 rebuilt units - that all quickly developed the vacuum lock condition. Finally, one Ford dealer in Odessa Texas went into the back and produced a brand new (22 year old!) 1949 Ford fuel pump! I never had another fuel pump problem.
Wishing you perfect health from another old lover of Fords . (I also once had an 18 year old 1966 Mustang....)