I was seven when it came out, oh how time flies. The 3DS introduced me to a lot of great franchises, like Fire Emblem, Legend of Zelda, Pokemon, and many other JRPGs. I must've gotten it in 2013, around when Pokemon X came out. I did have a DS, though since I was rather young I had few games to actually play on it, so the 3DS was really my first handheld console. I remember playing it during car rides to Georgia, the battery lasted to about the halfway point, which is typically when we stopped so it could charge up. Playing with one of my friends in sixth grade, battling Pokemon and Smash, racing in Mario Kart, and working together in Triforce Heroes. The 3DS was one of the consoles that defined my childhood, sure the 3D might've been bad at times, but the games were so much fun.
The social aspect is one thing I missed out on with 3DS when compared to DS. I played a lot of friends in Mario Kart 7 in 2012, but by the time Smash, Sun & Moon, and Triforce Heroes came out we were all in high school and everyone pretty much moved on to cells phones by them. Glad you got to experience it tho!
Well I'm in high school now, and before the pandemic it was pretty common to see people around the school playing Super Smash Bros Ultimate against each other, I even held some tournaments with like 10 people or so. The social aspects of the 3DS and Switch is probably why I enjoy them so much. I'm sorry you missed out on the social aspects of those platforms.
When we went on a trip to NASA in houston, I brought my switch along, and we played it all the way down there, all night, and all the way back. We went between Smash, Mario Kart, and had a few goes at Arms. (This was a school trip, in case you didn't figure)
Now the best I can do is get a friend or two to come over to play video games, which while nice isn't quite the same as just playing during lunch or free time during whatever class I'm in. PC gaming with friends, while I thoroughly enjoy, isn't the quite same. Hopefully everyone will go back full time next year, as I will be a senior then.