Legally, they are out of limbo, but many others who wanted to marry face difficult decisions.
Bob Hayne and Bob Brown are a lot like any other long-term couples; their mindset today is hardly where they began.
The two met in a bar 28 years ago. It is a lifetime love they affirmed, first as domestic partners, and then in a marriage ceremony last year.
ABC7: "Is love deeper when you're married?"
Bob Brown: "No, but I think it is more sustainable."
Their good news is they will remain married under the law. But it is a mixed victory.
"I have always felt religion and politics should remain in separate beds," Bob Hayne said.
Reactions among those in San Francisco's gay community were predictable.
"It's an important word, words matter," Jennifer Horthwein said.
For Kevin Grimley and Nelson Gomez the decision means an engagement in limbo.
"It's not like we're in our 20s, we're in our mid-30s, time to settle down," Kevin Grimley said.
They could easily go away to marry in another state, but that would mean leaving the fight in California. And that would be wrong, they say.
"We want to do the proper process, but we want our union to be recognized as any other union," Nelson Gomez said.
"If you love somebody and want to be with that person, you're going to fight for it," Grimley said.
And if you are a couple, you fight together, married or not.
Marriage -- an eight letter word, that binds, and on a day like this, exasperates.