Good news! I think I solved all of the problems that were keeping me grounded. The first thing was the VTX. The VTX was mounted so tightly within the frame, that the band/channel button was being inadvertently pressed, causing me to lose video signal. I removed the 3m 2 sided tape holding my VTX to the top frame, and used a small zip tie instead. This provided just enough room, to prevent the sandwiched components from inadvertently changing channels or cutting into wires. Speaking of cut wires. The sandwich effect was also pressing onto my receiver wires hard enough to flatten them and create a short in the connection. I replaced the receiver wires that were damaged from the component sandwich, and rerouted them so that they would not be damaged again.
After making these changes and throwing on some fresh props I took my quad to the sky to test me repairs. And this I time, I didn't take it easy. Not to my standards anyway. I pushed that little 4" pretty hard and had an amazing flight without any issues arising.
Hopefully with these issues behind me I can focus a bit more on developing the muscle memory and skill needed to fly like the top pilots. Happy flying folks!